Wow Skippy, you should teach a class on how not to get into debt. Actually, I think that class should be required curriculum for high school freshman. The concept of “if I knew then, what I know now” is spot on. When I first got a credit card, I didn’t know how to handle it either. Now I am one of those who is up to my ears in debt, but I don’t complain. I know that I have done this to myself. I am down to one credit card and still paying off two others. Student Loans? Check. Low household income? Check. Spending more than I make? Not on your life.
But this was a lesson I had to learn the hard way. Why didn’t it make sense? Why didn’t anyone sit me down and explain to me the consequences of debt? Sounds like it should be common sense, right? Well, it simply isn’t. Years ago I lost my job, my dad, my boyfriend, and my sanity, all within a couple of weeks of each other. I went wild and pulled out my credit card at every turn, filling the gaps in my life with alcohol and partying. Boy, that was a mistake.
Don’t you wish we all had a time machine that let us go back, sit down with our younger (more naive) selves, and have a good heart-to-heart. Don’t you? Well, we can’t. We wind up in debt, or married to the wrong person, or working at a dead end job, or moving to the wrong place, or….
But this is what makes us human. You know what else makes us human? Wanting more. A bigger house, a new car, a date night to the movies, a Mac, a vacation. Besides, what is the point of life if we can’t live it? Well, we really won’t be living life if we lose everything due to overspending.
So how don’t you overspend and go into debt? Well, let me give you some tips based on the list Skippy found of things the middle class can’t afford anymore. I agree that the article in question is a bunch of word vomit, but I hope to put some positive light on the list from my perspective (as someone who is in the middle class and deep in debt).
Want to go on a big vacation and can’t afford it? You have two options: either don’t go, or start saving your pennies. If you must go on a vacation right now, go somewhere in the off-season, or go to the mountains. You don’t have to spend a lot to go have a little fun. If you are up to your eyeballs in debt, then don’t be an idiot. Pay off your debts, and then have fun. Work now, fun later.
Are you kidding me? New cars are a luxury item. I am of the belief that all you really need is a vessel to get you from point A to point B. You don’t really need a new car. This is stupid. Buy used and get over yourself.
To Pay Off Debt
You can pay off debt if you don’t overspend on other luxury items. I will probably be in debt until I am ninety; but I will pay it off, slowly but surely.
Well, yeah, if you are overspending and not saving in the first place then you wont have any emergency savings. Maybe you should turn your vacation fund into emergency savings first.
*Sigh* See what Skippy Says.
If you BUDGET for medical care, you can get medical care. This is a basic concept, folks. I think medical care should be pretty high on the “things you need to budget for” list.
Again, this is a pretty easy thing to budget for. I always see coupons for dental care in the Money Mailers, or there is always Comfort Dental. Affordable dental care is actually very accessible; unless there are a lot of fucked up things wrong with your teeth.
Being “poor” is not a bad thing. You can figure it out if you are smart with your money and, as Skippy says, learn to do the math. You can enjoy life on a budget! I actually enjoy finding bargains to save money; it is my own personal way of hunting (Get it? Bargain hunting? HA!) Anywho, stop complaining and start thinking. You can thank us later.