Finances are statistically a great divider in marriage between spouses. Marital harmony can be completely derailed by financial burden or stress commonly known as debt. Taylor Sanchez, new mom, financial coach and BYU-Idaho alumna, has sought to educate fellow mothers on their power in creating a healthy financial atmosphere for themselves and their families. In an interview with BYU-Idaho Radio, she shared how financial education can positively impact home life. 

“Mothers have so much influence over their home, and they have so much power, too, in their home to create an environment of peace and love and safety and security. When your temporal needs are not met, it’s hard for your spiritual needs to be fully met…And so, I want moms to know how powerful they are to have an influence on their financial situation even if they don’t work,” Sanchez said. 

After getting married, Sanchez and her husband recovered from over $35,000 of debt on student loans and related expenses. Throughout her journey as a college student, wife and mother, she has learned a thing of two about the need for financial competency. She recognized holes in her own understanding about budgeting, loans and debt recovery. As a result, Sanchez started her Instagram page dedicated to sharing helpful tips and coaching mothers on the very topics she wishes she had known starting out. 

“I have become passionate about coaching moms and coaching couples in their money to help them find financial balance and to ultimately find freedom from the bondage of consumer debt. Another part of my purpose is to encourage Latter-day Saint families to return to the practicality and to the blessings that are available from living a debt-free life,” Sanchez said. 

Through her experience as a financial coach, Sanchez explained that one of the main money mistakes people make is focusing more on how much is owed per month on a debt rather than considering the total overall. She cautioned that this usually leads to spending hundreds if not thousands of dollars more in interest than the initial cost of the item or service. Overspending ultimately limits freedom and peace of mind. 

“I want people to have choices and what happens when you burden yourself with debt and you have no emergency fund savings and you’re not investing in your future is that you don’t have the freedom that you should have,” Sanchez said. “I think that that’s really one goal of the gospel as a whole is for us to be as free as we possibly can, for us to be free.” 

Sanchez said that debt is essentially paying for your past. This can include paying for classes taken years prior, a meal eaten last week or clothes purchased two Christmases ago. This is not ideal but can be resolved. Sanchez encouraged individuals and couples to become curious about their income, spending and savings as one of the first steps to financial recovery.  

As a second step, she recommends evaluating how long your savings balance would last if both you and your spouse lost source of income. By consciously understanding your monetary circumstance in a hypothetical emergency, you can realistically gauge the security or instability of your financial situation. According to Sanchez, another resource that helped her and her spouse climb out of debt was the book A Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness by Dave Ramsey, but above all else, Sanchez emphasized that God is the number one resource in financial decision making. 

“The first resource that I recommend is actually prayer and making this a spiritual matter. A lot of people don’t understand that this is a spiritual matter, that living out of debt and living without the bondage of debt is a spiritual matter…You kind of have to find a testimony of that and to do that, you’ve got to make it a matter of prayer and bring God into your finances and into your financial situation,” Sanchez said.