Brian Preston, CPA, CFP®, PFS

"The Money Guy"

As host of “Money Tune-Up”, his exclusive Trucker Territory podcast, Brian Preston helps owner operators better understand the financial opportunities and obstacles unique to the trucking industry. With nearly 25 years of wealth management and financial planning experience, Brian has dedicated his career to helping people attain and maintain financial success. Currently the Managing Principal of Abound Wealth, LLC, for more than 10 years he has hosted the award-winning podcast, “The Money Guy.” A regular contributor to US News and World Report magazine, his insights and common sense money-saving advice have been featured in such noted business publications as The Wall Street Journal, Forbes and Newsweek. A proud Georgia Bulldog graduate, Brian lives with his wife Jennifer and two daughters in Nashville, Tennessee.

Q&A with Brian

Q: What do truckers and the trucking industry mean to you?
A: Most Americans probably don’t think about how things get to where they are. Every facet of our lives are impacted by trucking. Produce, meat, everything you take for granted was brought to you by a trucker.
Q: What do truckers mean to the economy?
A:They’re the backbone. It’s that simple. They make it all possible. Imagine having a fragmented country without roads and truckers connecting our cities. Our economy could never exist.
Q: In your opinion, what’s the coolest looking international currency?
A: You know, It’s a patriotic thing. Of course, it’s got to be the greenback. I’m a “go USA all the way” type of guy.
Q: What do all the letters after your name mean?
A: The first is certified public accountant, that’s the CPA. The next is certified financial planner, CFP. And the third one is personal financial specialist, PFS, but all that means is I’m a CPA that does financial planning.
Q: You have a CDL? Please explain.
A: It just so happens that driving a bus in college, at the University of Georgia, was one of the highest paying jobs for students. I got $7.25 an hour. That was a lot at the time. So, I drove for three years. Over 1,000 hours of accident-free driving. The sad part was becoming a student instructor. I didn’t get to drive anymore because I was training younger students.
Q: Do you think we should do away with the penny?
A: Economically I know that it costs more to make a penny than a penny is actually worth. But ridding our system of it is a slippery slope. I don’t think the “rounding” that would take place would end up benefiting consumers.
Q: What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever written off on a client’s taxes?
A: Once I wrote off a fleet, yes a fleet, of tanning beds for a client.
Q: You’ve got $5 and you’re in a dollar store. What do you buy?
A: Typically, when I’m at a dollar store I’m buying cleaning products and birthday cards. Those are two products with the greatest markups at conventional stores. And maybe you wanted a silly answer, but I’m so nerdy I can actually give you a legitimate answer for that.
Q: What is one thing that you are particularly frugal about? What do you splurge on?
A: I’m particularly frugal on things that I don’t put value on. Things like ordering soda at a restaurant or buying designer clothes. But what I do spend money on is travel, creating memories. We only get one shot at life, so try to create as many memories as possible. That’s what your children will remember.
Q: How much money should OOs have in reserve for emergencies?
A: You should have about three months of overhead expenses covered to keep your operation rolling. But individually OOs should have three to six months of what it costs to live. That means house payments, food, etc. This is ideal, aspirational. If you don’t it’s not the end of the world, but it’s a good goal.
Q: What single thing do you envy least about the trucking lifestyle? What makes you envious?
A: I know the trucking lifestyle is tough, and it’s not all fun and games, but being a paid tourist is very appealing to my lifestyle. I love to travel. What would be tough though is being away from family. That’s hard. I really tip my hat to the drivers that are strong enough to take the separation from their families.
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