Philosophy

At Surplus Training, there are 3 main areas we help people with. Earning more, spending less, and using the surplus to save and grow wealth. Think of money in terms of a boat. The engine is like your income; it powers you forward. A big engine gets you there quicker. The weight of the boat slows you down--this can be thought of as bills/spending. An anchor (debt) can keep you stagnant and even sink your boat in a storm when life happens. You need a map or financial plan to get to where you want to go. You should also have some training on how to drive a boat before you set out at sea, otherwise you risk getting off course or crashing.  Whether you need help with debt, spending, or making more money, we can show you the way to creating a surplus, or living on less than you make. Once you have a surplus you can work on building your net worth. Having a plan allows you to stay on track and will put you at ease. 

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Founder, Erik Pearl

I love helping people, and am genuinely interested in personal finance.  When I decided to start Surplus Training, I already had a successful career with a company for over a decade that was rewarding, but fell short in getting meaning out of my work. I was amazed at how many people out there really did not have their financial house in order, or even a plan to get it in order. After having discussions with friends and family and helping people close to me open and manage retirement accounts, I knew there was something I had to offer that others desperately needed. After all, I taught myself how to manage money by reading every financial literacy book I could get my hands on, and immersing myself in a subject I barely understood. I felt like it was a secret club that I was not a part of and I didn't like it. I came from very humble beginnings. My parents didn't have much money, and neither did their parents, and so on. From an early age growing up in a family with a single mother, I learned about scarcity. My brother and I were showered with love but learned how to be happy with less. We didn't know any different and weren't concerned or consumed with money, our lack of it, or what it represented. At a point in my professional career I found myself working really hard, not enjoying what I was doing and although having early success, the industry (as with many others) I was working in was body slammed by the financial crisis of 2008. I was let go from a job I didn't really like anyway which was distressing, and it was a pivotal time in my life. I could have wallowed in self pity and collected unemployment while feeling sorry for myself thinking things were out of my control. It would have been nice to have a break, and I love comfy sweatpants! Instead, I did 2 things simultaneously: I swallowed my pride and get a few part time jobs to cover the loss of my career, and began the long process of applying to business schools to make myself more marketable. I wanted to have options, higher earning potential, and hopefully more to offer the world. It was a long road with long days and long nights just to study and pass the entrance exam that qualified you to apply to business schools. I made progress every day and with consistent dedication and focus. I got a score I was able to accepted and admitted into a graduate school which had an executive program (one in which classes are structured for those who intend to work during the day). Just getting accepted felt like an accomplishment, but the hard work was just beginning.  My plan was to get a fulltime job during the day and pay for my graduate program out of pocket as I did with my undergraduate program. I didn't be tempted by the siren song of social circles, so the school I chose was close enough to visit but not close enough to allow for spontaneous social invitations. The road was not easy. There were several things I had to say "no" to in order to stay on course in an educational sense and a financial sense. I deprived myself of things on a daily basis. My path to building a monthly surplus was possible through pinching pennies, stretching my dollars, until eventually being able to increase my income, in which I lightened up on the frugality but continued to live well below my means. There were some stumbles along the way. But I was attentive to my spending, and didn't use credit cards or credit as an imaginary amount I would never have to pay back. The balances would weigh on me. I tell people the quickest path to wealth is to first be debt free (with the exception of your house). You can pay yourself first, automatically transferring money into an account you do not have easy access to. It has helped me immensely; it enabled me to save up for a down payment for a house and purchase a home. I have it nearly paid off now. In Southern California, that is no easy task! I practice what I preach. If I can do it, you can do it. The time is now, the choice is yours. We can do this together. Can you imagine how remarkable you could be if you aimed at something and worked toward that aim every single day? You see what you aim at. Instead of avoiding the things you know you should be doing, visualize what you would be like if you actually did them every single day? That is the power of intentionality. Get intentional, start with a free consult. Get a plan. Stick to it. Thrive!