INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - The economy is nearly the top story everyday; from thecontinuing recession, to bankruptcies and layoffs. A story 24-HourNews 8 will continue to cover from every angle.
Beginning Wednesday night News 8 is taking it a step furtherbeyond the story of the day. Money Watch8 Challenge, 60 Days to Change is an interactive program thatwill help Hoosiers get a grip on their finances. To demonstrate howit works, News 8 is following three Indianapolis area familiesthrough the process.
The first family, Amy and Brent have two sons and a dog.Brent is a heavy equipment operator. Amy is a stay at home mom.
"It's going on about a year and a half now that I've stayedhome. Before that I was working at a retirement community and lovedmy job," said Amy.
The couple has a mortgage, but not much other debt.
"We both said we don't know where my paycheck went…said Amy. Well a lot of it went to the daycare and transportationand lunch out and things you did after work," said Brent.
Amy handles the family finances and is still coping with theloss of her income.
"He's always telling me that you're spending too much hereand here and here. I want him to see that I'm really not spendingmore than we need," said Amy.
The second family, Joe and Merita have been married 30 years.They have a 23-year-old son still living at home and a marrieddaughter. They find themselves coping with an unexpected hardship.After 11 years, Merita lost her job at a local manufacturing plant.
"Because I take the ostrich effect, that I really don't wantto know the debt ratio, I'm sure it's pretty ugly at this pointfrom where we were and where we're sitting now," said Merita.
"I have lost half of what I've made. I was lucky enough tofind another position, but it's half," said Merita.
And that hits the family hard.
"Other guys take breaks you know and they go to the candymachine or the break truck shows up for work and their out buyingstuff and here I am, I've got a cup of coffee and I'm happy," saidJoe.
The third family, Nadia is a single mom raising her3-year-old son Aidan.
Nadia said, "I live paycheck to paycheck."
Nadia has a master's degree and works for a health carecompany as an account executive. But, she struggles to make endsmeet and still put away some savings.
"I need to know how to do that, how to save money for myson's college, how to save money for myself? Get the things that Iwant in life have a nice comfortable life," said Nadia.
"60 Days to Change is an intensive financial wellnessprogram," said Peter Dunn, financial expert.
Dunn got his stockbroker's license while he was still incollege.
"The program is designed to take the excuses out of yourfinancial life. A lot of time I hear people say, well I'm not goodwith money. Well that's impossible. Money has nothing to do withmoney. Its discipline, its habits, its motivation and itsmomentum," said Dunn.
That's why Dunn said he developed 60 Days to Change.
"If you're dealing with some debt, you'll have a plan on howto get out of debt. You'll understand the proper amount ofemergency reserves to have. You'll really stabilize the riskelements of life," said Dunn.
That's exactly what all three families said they need to do.
"60 days to a new financial beginning," said Nadia.
Brent said, "If we start having more of a flow into oursavings account. That would help out a lot."
"I just want to know in 15 years I have no debt and the moneythat we do have coming in, we can budget to do the fun things inlife," said Merita.
The program is broken down by weeks. Each week will focus ona different financial item; debt, budgeting, risk management,getting organized. E-mails will be sent out telling you how to moveforward each week. This will not take a lot of your time and itwon't cost you anything. To sign up just click here.
Next week's topic is getting organized. It's the first weekall three families are on the program and we'll show you whatthey're doing. You can compare your progress with theirs.
A winter weather advisory was issued for Wayne, Union, Switzerland, Ripley, Ohio, Franklin, Fayette and Dearborn counties on Saturday night.
IMPD officials say a 3-year-old boy has died after he was shot in the head Saturday evening.
Lawrence Police are investigating an overnight shooting in the 8800 block of Pendleton Pike. Police say the shooting happened around 3 a.m. Sunday morning.