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I Was An American Fool
Story of debt
There are many things that we can do to keep out of debt. It seems like most of Americans today are in some sort of debt. They have a big Mortgage, car payment , credit card bills and the list goes on and on. Sometimes we can feel like we are running around dead end corners trying to catch up. It is so easy to get behind on our non essential items. You may be saying to yourself that I am crazy and you are in dept with the things that you really need and that they are essential items.
I was twenty five, had three credit cards, I was paying double the payment, my credit rating was great. I thought I had it all worked out. Living the American dream of paying with credit I was buying stuff like crazy, but I figured even if I had a month where I was struggling I would be able to pay at least the minimum. Suddenly I found myself without a job. I found myself being a single full time dad (which by the way I love) but it was hard and I was not able to pay the minimum payment on my credit cards. A few months went by and with the late fees and the credit cards wanting all of their money up front I thought that my financial future was finished with late fees and interest. I owed triple my credit limit. I was getting hounded from calls from people I owed money to. It was hell or as close to it as I thought I could be.
I decided to change my life around. I called my credit friends and made deals with them to lower what was owed. I was able to pay off my dept for a fraction of what I owed. I was able to get most of the interest knocked off all by my lonesome. I decided that if I could not afford to buy an item without cash it was not worth having.
I own my truck. It is a 1997 ford f-250 heavy duty. I picked it up for 1800 bucks on ebay. It has been a wonderful vehicle and has been very good to me. I own my furniture. I do not make monthly payments. I own a nice 32' hd tv. I own a Wii, Playstation 3,Playstation 2 all paid cash for and I work part time from home and do not make huge bucks, People who know what I make wonder how I can do what I do.
I have told quite a few people about how I only purchase something
if I have the cash and they say, well, who could afford to buy a house in
cash. Ok, I have to give it to you that most people cannot afford to go spend
cash on a house. I purchased my house on ebay for $25,000. The seller was
selling it contract for deed so I put $2500 down and $275 per month at
10% interest houses rent in this area for $500 or more per month.
People told me that I am crazy for paying this kind of interest. My
house will be paid off in 15 yrs and will cost me $34000 and the house
is valued at $60000. So in my eyes I am still getting one heck of a
deal. You could purchase a $250000 dollar house, you are going to spend
a big chunk of your hard earned money on it and when hard times come
you could end up with the bank owning your house.
It does not matter how much money you make you make 15000-or-150000 a year the choice is yours if you want to be debt free.
How can you do
this, it is easy, it does take a little self control but besides that
fairly easy. Choose how much you would like to spend on a car for
example $2700 so you save the money, put aside every month what you can
afford until you have saved up for the car you want. Do not touch the
saved money whatsoever or you will not succeed because there will
always be things coming up.. Do what you have to do to save that $2700
if you have to ride your bike to work, carpool with a friend, or walk,
do it. You will soon have the car you are wanting. Same thing for every
thing else like a tv, furniture, what ever you want, save the money and I
tell you, you will feel more happy in life.
Emergency's always come up and they always will, so this is what I do. I take my earnings over the month and put 15% directly into my savings account. This money is only to be used for emergency's only: for example your water heater goes out, that would be a good reason to use your emergency fund. Not if you need a new hair cut, that could seem like an emergency but it is not.
I hope this article was informative and hope it can help some of you out there struggling with debt like I was. Now I lead more of a stress free life, and I can enjoy life. I may not own the biggest or nicest things but I can be happy and content with life.