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Chasing Away Money Horrors - Recession and Increasing Poverty

Updated on June 26, 2012

Moderate Cutbacks

The ideas in this two-part Hub and related pages in this week HubMob topic can help keep you from decompensating to a level of poverty.
The ideas in this two-part Hub and related pages in this week HubMob topic can help keep you from decompensating to a level of poverty.

Reasonable Cutbacks and Money Maximization

This is the second portion of the article that began at How To Maximize Your Money – Horror Stories and Hail Marys

In a recession or other tough times, people cut back on expenses. However, cutting back on basic needs is unreasonable. If you are between jobs or are living beyond your means, consider some of these possibilities:

Start Early

Financial literacy in schools: This is an award-winning 10-week program form the Oklahoma Council on Economic Education in cooperation with JPMorgan Chase and The Oklahoman newspaper.
Financial literacy in schools: This is an award-winning 10-week program form the Oklahoma Council on Economic Education in cooperation with JPMorgan Chase and The Oklahoman newspaper.

President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy

Financial Literacy Resources and Seminars-

"On January 22, 2008, President George W. Bush signed an executive order creating, for the first time, a President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy… I am pleased, on behalf of the Council, to present the first annual report to the President, which details the progress we made this year and outlines a series of recommendations for future initiatives that will help the country achieve the level of financial literacy that is imperative in today's global economy…" -- Charles R. Schwab Chairman, President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy Founder, Chairman and CEO, the Charles Schwab Corporation

Read the report at and Annual National Literacy Report.

The US Financial Literacy and Education Commission resulted from legislation known as Title V of the Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction, or FACT Act. In addition to a website listed below, the agency also provides a TOLL-FREE phone number, 1-888-MYMONEY. In all, 20 US Federal agencies collaborated to provide financial education services to people in the United States. These include the following list of homepage features below, along with additional pages of free offerings. Everything from checking accounts to mortgages and other credit plans, swindles, retirement, investments, and more are covered.

  • The Power of Partnerships - Government agencies came together with the private sector (commercial business in order to create and provide programs and resources to raise America’s financial literacy.
  • Beware of Advance Fee Loan Scams & Foreclosure Rescue Scams

In fact, there is even a related page for children and youth.

From CatalystChicago.
From CatalystChicago.

Depression Era Ideas & Others

Rent Parties – Don't take this literally. In the Depression, when a family on the block was unable to pay their rent, they would host a party to which the guests brought a covered dish or a beverage and a couple of dollars to donate toward the rent. It saved a lot of folks from eviction. Today, families and singles can gather together for a potluck and even take home leftovers. They leave with some food and uplifted spirits, as well as deepening friendships.

Roommates and Renters – It's fine to take in roommates and renters or borders, but require background checks first and have a rental agreement and set of rules to sign by all parties.

Home School – If one of the parents loses a job, that parent can stay home and home-school the children, even using free online K-12 schools. My church's online, accredited school has saved many families a lot of money as well as given them control over their children's high quality education.

Ignore Advertising – Do not be persuaded by media advertising to spend outside your limits for items that you do not need. In the case of hard times and demanding children, have a meeting and be firm that there will be no Hannah Montana or Paris Hilton merchandise, and no Blackberries for 5-year-olds. For some youth, having them pay the monthly bills under your supervision one month can do the trick. They look at the bills, a list of the expected bills to come in, and the amount in the checking account, and write out the checks (you sign them). Don’t forget to designate a monthly amount to save for emergencies.

Credit Cards – Stop using them and do not accept any new ones. Save one for emergencies.

Subscriptions – You may be able to enjoy your magazines & newspapers at the library or at home online at a reduced rate or even free..

Memberships and Clubs – This includes online clubs. Besides necessary professional memberships and licensing fees, cut out other memberships temporarily.

Expensive Hobbies – Some yarn-crafters have not only a reasonable stash of which they are proud but also an entire one or two full rooms of expensive unused yarn - $20-30 for a single skein. If you are affected by a recession, turn some of that large stash into garments and other items that you can sell, and donate some items to local children's hospitals or service groups. Cut out expensive hobbies when you are in financial difficulties - golf, boating, etc. Write and read Hub Pages instead!

Cable TV and Bundled Services– Revert to television without the cable stations or do away with TV and read or talk instead. However, the Internet is probably more important than a landline phone these days and you can use telephony via the Internet, so don't give that up if you can manage it. Get rid of the landline phone instead.

Extravagant Shopping – Many people shop when they do not need anything or for recreation. If you are bored with your life or unhappy with your family and are also having financial difficulties, then is behooves you to address those problems instead of going shopping.

If you can afford to shop for no reason, then you might choose to purchase some items that you can give away to friends or donate to community groups and schools. This will save waste that can help the country overall. If you jest like shopping, join a Mystery Shopping Company and do the shops in which you buy big-ticket items and return them the next day. You'll earn enough money for transportation, lunch, and a nice present for yourself in addition to being able to have input into the service and quality of America's goods and service.

Entertainment – Go out to events less often and make those occasions special events for friends and family – or even alone; everyone deserves a special treat just for them.

Extravagant Food – Cut out desserts most days; do not waste food by letting it set out or in the refrigerator too long. Purchase store brands when they are truly as good as the more expensive labels, but not foods that are truly inferior. Build up a pantry of staples gradually and learn to cook from scratch - it's much less expensive and more nutritious. However, have desserts occasionally and go out to eat once or twice a month, if you can afford it. Start a small garden – this can be a single tomato plant in a pot.

Unnecessary High-Cost Medical Procedures – If you are having difficulty in paying the rent or buying food for your family, now is probably not the time to have cosmetic surgery. Use sound judgment and consult with your physician/dentist/other practitioner about the necessity of this and similar services. However, do not put off needed treatment and prescriptions. Programs are available for providing many free medications to those in financial need - call your local hospital for information and a referral. Do not avoid annual checkups and necessary treatments.

Automobiles and Houses – It is possible in some places to trade in autos for less expensive types and to a lesser extent, to refinance homes. Consider whether this is an option for you and if so, use your savings for investing. 


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    • profile image

      Correen 9 years ago

      Great ideas and lots of new information for this gal!

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 9 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      High Netters - I do hope some of these are new and can give people a boost. Thanks for visiting.

      rockinjoe - My parents never talked about it - well only once and it was horrifying - but I listened to neighborhood market owners and WWII veterans talking about it and it was scary. One man joined Kroger groceries right out of high school, retired fomr there and ran a market until he was about 70. He helped someof his friends with jobs in the Depression, but some drifted all over the US talking odd jobs. We always think Never in America, but it's possible all the same.

      Thanks for visitng!

    • rockinjoe profile image

      Joseph Addams 9 years ago from Standing right behind you!

      Patty, it was great advice, but scary, too. My parents used to talk about growing up during the Great Depression and I'd almost always brush it off. Now I fear I might be living in it.

    • Netters profile image

      Netters 9 years ago from Land of Enchantment - NM

      A lot of good help. New ideas. Thank you sweetie!

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 9 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      That's a really good use for thess tips, Bruce - I think they can help and even spur thoughts of new ones that your clients can share.

    • Bruce Elkin profile image

      Bruce Elkin 9 years ago from Victoria, BC Canada

      Great follow up to "How To Maximize Your Money." Very practical advice. I'll be bookmarking this one, and pointing my coaching clients to it. Thank you, Patty!