An optimistic story for Hanukkah about young parents who struggled to complete the month and thanks to the financial counselling received by Paamonim were able to organize their finances and buy a home of their own.

“Life can be difficult at times,” says comedian and creator Hanoch Daum, and no doubt there is much truth in this. Those lacking the knowhow to manage their finances in a world of abundance, personal aspirations and constant business competition, are more likely to find themselves on route to harsh moments of tension and hardship. Those embarking on newly formed families may find this even more demanding.

I met my wife through a mutual friend and within three months I proposed to her. Why hurry? How did I know this was the right match? I just knew it. We were both over 30, had gone down separate routes, until we ran into each other and somehow determined our future path were meant to be joined.

Our first child was born and brought tons of joy, and within no time another adorable baby was born. Then came the reality of kindergarten, nappies, clothes and more expenses all which were new to us. “And what about my personal journey, my business?” I contemplated whether I would be able to maintain my independent business in a changing economic reality, or would my new status now dictate new circumstances? My wife and I anxiously studied our bank account along with the increasing monthly payments and mutually admitted “We needed help to survive”

My meticulous partner searched the internet and stumbled upon Paamonim – offering free support comprising personal instructive counselling. We jumped on the opportunity, immediately completed a form with our details and received a call from Uri, a volunteer with Paamonim within a day or two. He asked for further details about any debts we had, student loans, fixed expenses, credit card details, pension schemes and more. After delving into the data he firmly announced we would have to make changes to our behavioral habits and embrace a healthier financial pattern.” My partner and I gloomily nodded in agreement.

Persevere and succeed

The process that required us to log and document all expense appeared demanding and tough at first. After all upkeep is an enormous challenge and we found giving up on lavishing expenses such as eating out extremely tough

We created a WhatsApp group called Paamonim-log” where we listed daily expenses. My self-employed income was badly impacted by Covid, forcing us to reduce expenses even more. However, after we began working with and learning from the Paamonim counselor we were greatly surprised to discover that despite the reduced income we were able to save money and streamline processes that previously seemed absolutely unmanageable. We saw what other households were experiencing and were adamant to perform differently. We knew we owed this to our 2 girls who truly deserved responsible functional parents, able to maintain a healthy and stable home

Uri provided smart advice and praised us during the online meetings for our accomplishments and the progress made, “I would like to recommend you consider investing in a home of your own home”. The money you save can be used for a mortgage.”  We then discussed options and shared our findings with him following which we signed a contract for our very own home.

There is no better and more satisfying feeling – knowing that you have committed to a process that requires persistence and eventually succeeding in owning your own home

Following the skills and knowledge we acquired through the Paamonim counselling we now feel more responsible for our money and are happy and optimistic, which naturally impacts our relationship as a couple and our girls. We are less stressed and tense and recognize the ability to cope and correct even the smallest staggers. We constantly review our budget plan and aim to embark on a new plan, starting this January. Still, life is dynamic and modifications are constantly required.

Hanukkah is already here and when we light the candles in our cozy home, we will be forever grateful of “Paamonim”, who showed us how to live within our means. Our lives have changed beyond recognition and our anxieties are long gone

The writer and his wife underwent a financial counselling process with Paamonim

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