The plastic in our wallets, a credit line or line of credit and the handy loans that we get at the bank are all ways that we overextend ourselves. Long gone are the days when people spent only what they earned and did not spend it before they earned it. With the advance of bill pay most people can even set up automatic payments ahead of the fact. It takes only a moment for us to bury ourselves in piles of debt.
Recently, the government has begun to make a plan for reform when it comes to the plastic that we use so easily. They are attempting to pass measurements that will limit credit card companies from allowing consumers to go over their limits. Perhaps this will help people curb their spending appetites, at least somewhat. There should be a point when those people that have maxed out all their cards and borrowed all they can are stopped. These people will never get out of debt if they are continually allowed to charge every purchase they make.
Perhaps instead of the many ways that creditors punish consumers when they are trying to collect their money, they should make them enroll in budgeting classes or ways that they can learn to pay for their purchases without relying on the money they don’t have. When consumers have to declare bankruptcy, perhaps programs could be instituted that would force these people to take classes to better learn how to manage their money. Either they can take the classes or the cards are frozen.
In the current economic state we are all working a little harder to manage our money. It is an essential skill that people must learn in order to make sure they are prepared, not only for difficult times as they come, but also for the future and retirement. Whether it is a school program in high school or college or whether parents need to be teaching their children how to manage money, I’m not sure. But, programs, in one way or the other should be made more accessible so that all individuals can begin to use less plastic and more paper.
Budgeting is hard. Making the choice not to buy something is sometimes painful, especially when the world demands that we compare ourselves to our well off neighbors and friends. However, we can all mentally make the choice not to get wrapped up in the comparison game. We can all make the choice to spend our money wisely and to prepare for the future. We can all make the choice to be good stewards of what we’ve earned.
When I speak to my friends that have a lot of debt I hear the frustration in their voices and the hardness with which they speak. They are not happy to constantly pay the money. People don’t need to live in constant chains to their credit cards, credit lines or loans. If we all learn to use our money wisely then we can avoid the large debts that go along with making unwise choices. While we may have to practice patience when making large purchases, in the long run we are going to feel much better about our financial state. (Rebecca Beckett)