FAQ


All coaches referred by Dave Ramsey should provide a set of core values and principles that are consistent with Dave’s advice and teaching.  However, what you receive from each coach will widely vary from coach to coach.   Only our firm has been Dave’s perennial certified coach of choice in Houston (since 2005).  Some coaches are actually long distance or offer coaching as a hobby or part-time venture.  By contrast, financial coaching is all we do!  We’ve been devoted to coaching full time, having served over 2000 clients with over 20,000 hours of one-on-one coaching.  Because quality of advice matters, EXPERIENCE MATTERS!!!  The depth of experience StoreHouse coaches offer is second to none.  In addition, we hold and maintain professional licenses and designations (CPA*, AFC®) that assure you receive due professional care, grounded in financial competence.  All our coaching is done in our secure, confidential professional offices—not at some library or corner Starbucks.  For other differences that set the StoreHouse coaches apart from the rest, see Why We’re Different.
    • It depends.  Because there are so many variables that will determine the overall cost (e.g., type/nature of service offered, the length and scope of services, the timeframe of the services relative to the client’s objectives, the client’s ability to pay, the individual coach assigned to the client), we provide an introductory consultation for $175 for the first hour to address the immediate questions and concerns a client may have, then outline exactly what those customized future costs would be.   For some, the $175 will be the only fee ever paid; for others, the total cost could be several hundred to several thousand dollars.  Everyone is different.  But two things we can promise….1. whatever we quote, we KNOW you can afford and 2. if you follow our advice in a timely manner, you WILL receive the value for the fees paid.  Furthermore the $175 will be credited toward the purchase of any package of services quoted.  AND, to further illustrate our affordability, we offer a 100 day guarantee.
You’re getting a one-on-one, confidential, high-level professional financial assessment and diagnostic service.  Most importantly, we will address your pressing questions and provide recommendations and advice in the limited time we spend with you.  If you want to consider coaching by the hour beyond the one-hour introductory consultation or as an ongoing service, we will also prescribe precisely what deliverables and solutions are the best fit (see What We Do), and what timetable and/or costs are involved in a customized coaching plan/package.
Again it depends.  If all you need is a few questions answered, then a single one hour session would do.  If you need a comprehensive financial plan, a working budget, a debt elimination strategy, and/or an accountability partner, then it could be as few as four sessions to as many as twenty-four sessions depending on the complexity and the objectives we establish from the outset.
Great question.  If you’re physically sick and urgently need medical treatment, you typically get the treatment you need; then figure out how to pay for it.  When you urgently need financial health, hiring a coach, the cost associated with it, and how it’s paid for are all integral to the financial “treatment” plan itself.  In other words, we’ll find the money or show you how to pay for the services based on your own numbers.  For some, it may mean sacrificing a discretionary expense, like dining out or cutting back on entertainment.  If it’s REALLY important, you’ll make a way.  It’s amazing how people say they can’t afford a financial coach, yet somehow can afford a $200/month cable bill.  What’s the priority? One thing’s for sure: cable TV will NOT guide your financial health and lead you to financial freedom.  If you genuinely cannot afford us, we’ll be the first to let you know.  We have no incentive to have you hire us only to find you’re in deeper over your head.  Generally, if you don’t currently have an income, then now is NOT the time to hire a coach.  But, if you have a steady income, then it’s up to us to demonstrate how you can pay for coaching.  Because, quality coaching by design will more than pay for itself!
Your income stream over the next economic cycle (typically seven consecutive years) is a surprisingly large number for most people.  Most of us think of income as just an annual number; however, financial coaching impacts far more than just your current month’s or year’s financials.  It’s a lifetime impact that is most accurately measured against the backdrop of the next seven years.   So, your coaching fees are partially calculated from this income stream, plus other important considerations such as: your debt to income ratio, your family size and general cost of living.  For example, if you make $80k per year, that means you’ll make over $560k over the next economic cycle (and that’s assuming you get no raise!).  If you’re building a $560k house, you’ll gladly enlist the professional help (architect, engineer, construction manager, etc) on the front end of that project to make sure your house is built the right way at the most efficient cost.  The same is true when you hire a professional financial coach to help you build your financial house.  They will provide you the best practices, system, counsel and accountability to ensure your long term financial plan is a success and should only cost you a very tiny, negligible percentage of that income stream.
If a coach doesn’t charge for their time, you must wonder why their time is not deemed valuable to them or anyone else.  If they provide value, they should charge commensurate with that value.  Other “advisors” offer a free consultation but are gaining that introduction in order to sell you a financial product tied to a commission, which StoreHouse never does.  Years ago, we offered a “free consultation” only to find that many recipients of the free service didn’t take the advice to heart and/or just didn’t show up for the scheduled appointment.   Why?  Because they weren’t equally invested into the process from the outset.  When we discovered that when our clients are invested into this process, we know they will generally take action and reap the benefits.  Therefore, we value our time, and charge accordingly because we’re changing lives and thereby improving lives for the long term.
Most “financial advisors” are usually selling a financial product or asset management for a % commission.  So, if your advisor doesn’t fit that description, then perhaps you’re receiving completely objective advice from a qualified professional.   Financial Coaching is generally more comprehensive and is quite distinct in that it focuses on planning and execution while also considering the behavioral and psychological aspects of money.  For other key distinctions, see Why We’re Different.
We maintain a professional and confidential office environment for our clients, so our clients come to our offices.
Yes we do.  There are particular coaching services that would generally be better provided in person.  However, whenever appropriate, we can provide coaching services online.  We use Webex as our online collaborative system.
No.  Make no mistake, we LOVE children.  But trying to focus on your finances at the same time your children are present would be difficult, if not impossible, to do.  Moreover, our offices are neither equipped nor insured to accommodate children.  Please make arrangements for childcare during your coaching sessions.
Since a disconnected or reluctant spouse has the capacity to undermine any plan you attempt on your own, we generally require married couples to work together.  Couples must operate from the same page and plan.  This is paramount to their eventual success.  If there are circumstances where a spouse cannot be present, we will evaluate these on a case by case basis.
Unfortunately, it happens–quite frequently.  We’re skilled and prepared to help you and your spouse deal with it.  We’re all about open disclosure and transparency between spouses and addressing/resolving the issues that caused it in the first place.  Let’s get everything in the open in a safe constructive environment and create a recovery plan that gets both spouses engaged and on the same page. 
Professionally?  No.  Practically, yes–insofar as it relates to financial matters.   In our experience, marriages are made stronger as a result of financial coaching.  Several marriage counselors throughout Houston refer their clients to us when they know that financial issues are the core problem.  However, if we detect in our client another issue is causing the marriage to be at risk, we will refer you to other qualified licensed professionals.
First, let’s establish that in the case of unmarried couples, we will work with any individual who has an income and is teachable and willing to make changes in their financial life.  However, when it comes to coaching couples, since marriage is based on a covenant defined by God (one man, one woman), we only work with couples together who meet this definition and have entered into that covenant.  This is our personal spiritual conviction.  We have repeatedly seen how cohabitation without the covenant of marriage is financially detrimental to couples.  Making a financial plan with someone who isn’t committed to you for life under this definition of marriage is a plan on sinking sand.  Because of this conviction, we are not qualified, equipped or able to work with couples in this situation. 
One of the primary recurring questions we hear from clients is, “How do I compare with everyone else?”  What they mean is, “help me evaluate where I am on the spectrum of financial health.  Years ago, as we developed statistical models for financial health, we created an index around 5 financial health standards for measuring how a household is performing financially.  Financial Health Index® (FHI) was formulated to provide that statistical and visual measurement of progress on your journey toward financial independence.  Your incremental progress on your financial plan (no matter how small) is detected within the FHI so you can see how financial action translates to a higher index score.
If professional athletes need ongoing coaching, wouldn’t it stand to reason that everyone (even the financially secure) would benefit from a financial coach?  Fiscal blind spots can easily develop over time (no matter how good you are), and having that unemotional third party professional in your corner will at least validate whether you’re on the right track.  Even healthy people go to doctors for occasional checkups—because they expect to get sick?  No.  It’s just smart to get confirmation or awareness that you’re staying within the healthy boundaries that assure your long term success.
Financial coaching is always valuable; but in this situation, its value is probably most felt.  We’ll show you how to prioritize your income dollars and formulate a strategy for each creditor and vendor to repair the situation.  If you’re intimidated or bullied into a payment plan with a creditor or vendor, you can be assured it’s not based on your financial well-being.  By contrast, we act as your advocates and give you the tools and scripts to confidently interact with these parties.  Our approach and plan will put your interests ahead of every creditor and vendor (for the purposes of making you financially healthy) and then teach you how to communicate with these parties while you’re in recovery mode.  Being scripted on what to say, what not to say; being confident on what to do, what not to do–will all be a momentum booster and tremendous stress reliever while on your journey to financial freedom.
Credit counseling and debt consolidation services are typically organized as a non-profit entity and underwritten by tax-deductible contributions from credit card companies.  This is precisely why credit card companies will often recommend these entities.  They’re in essence a “friendly” collection arm of the creditors to get you to follow their plan.  The solutions they offer are at best a “band-aid” approach to a gaping wound.  Repaying a creditor under their terms doesn’t address the underlying reasons that got you into debt in the first place.  Most customers of credit counseling and debt consolidation are REPEAT CUSTOMERS.  They pay off debt only to repeat the destructive financial cycle over again.  When you hire StoreHouse, you’re engaging in a planning discipline to master your cash flow with the objective to once and for all divorce your debt.  Divorcing debt is experienced by StoreHouse clients in four progressive stages—Separation, Elimination, Insulation and Prevention.  Without these four stages in your approach, you WILL likely repeat the debt cycle, only to find that you remarry debt at some point in your future.
If you’ve just been sued, there may still be time to negotiate a settlement. This is a serious situation that needs your attention and response right away.  If you don’t respond to this suit in a timely manner, the usual worst case scenario is that a summary judgment will be awarded to the creditor against you.  Once a creditor has a judgment, they can potentially access cash balances from your bank account, or even file a lien against your house.  Except for income tax levies and student loan defaults, a creditor cannot garnish wages in Texas.  While being sued isn’t the end of the world, having a plan and strategy to deal with this is urgent.  We can assist you in formulating the plan and strategy.  If you need legal advice or representation, we can refer you to someone as well.  It’s better to deal with debt much earlier so the possibility of a lawsuit or a judgment is minimized.
99% of the people who come to us thinking that bankruptcy is a viable option do NOT need to file bankruptcy.  Bankruptcy is expensive, has long lasting negative implications and is often oversold by attorneys with their scare tactics.  Bankruptcy should ALWAYS be the last option, and we’ll be there to objectively validate whether it should be pursued.


*This firm is not a CPA firm.