A few years ago, I realized that I carry a credit card balance every month.
I justified it. justifications can be misguided. There was no good reason for me to carry a balance every month. I just wasn’t paying attention to my money. And, I got really tired of sending Discover extra money every month. I decided to pay off my CC balance every month, so I’d no longer accrue interest.
In 2017, i didn’t pay any interest to Discover.
It’s been pretty nice.
It’s hard to save money. no one really teaches you how. I remember my 12th grade Decisions teacher tried to teach us how to budget, but none of it felt realistic. We were supposed to imagine our lives at age 22, and somehow, we all made decent money and could afford nice apartments. But no talk of student loans, credit cards, car loans, taxes…
When I was 20, I got a credit card. I didn’t understand late fees, interest, APR, anything! I racked up 1,000 dollars fast, and freaked OUT. Debt has always freaked me out. So, I paid it off, and I didnt use a CC again until a few years later.
I have learned how to ‘use’ a credit card, but I still think they suck. I use my CC for the ‘dollars’ but even that is just a scam. I just have to play along. Like, I just use discover card for gasoline. I get 5% cash back. So, I am just using it for something I needed anyway. But discover card wants me to go run out and use it for shit I dont need, so I wont be able to pay the full balance next month, so I’ll owe them interest.
No thanks. I’ll keep my damn money.
How I feel about Credit Cards:
- If you are a shopaholic, don’t use them at all. They’re too tempting. It’s like if you’re a smoker, are you going to be okay smoking a cigarette once in awhile? Or will that make you slip back into your bad habit? You have to know yourself and your limits. and there is a lot of power in recognizing that you can’t use something, like a credit card, or a cigarette, or oreos, or whatever the fuck it is.
- The points, and cash back bonus shit, is only useful if you’re using the credit card for things you needed anyway…which is basically just gasoline for your car and food to sustain your mortal existence. Dont go on an amazon.com shoppin’ spree because Discover is giving you 2 dollars for the 12 pack of socks you bought. Or whatever. Also, amazon is evil. But I’ll get into THAT another time!
- If you feel like we cannot escape the FICO-score fueled, credit score checking hellscape in America, just play the CC game, and use your credit card RARELY but enough to keep a good score. and ONLY if you can pay off the balance, so NEVER give these ppl any of your extra income. dont pay them interest. that’s your money. You earned it, you keep it…
sometimes, shit happens, and we land ourselves in debts. I know I could walk outside and a seagull could fall from the sky and send me to the hospital, and my shitty insurance has such a high deductible, I’d prob owe a couple thousand to the doctor. That’s another reason i dont want credit card payments. I want to save money for emergencies. Life is full of weird ass twists ‘n turns…and bills. It feels nice to know I am SORT OF protected, with an emergency fund.
Life tip: Have 3-6 months of cash. Pretend you could lose your job tomorrow. do you have enough to float by for 3-6 months? It relieves a lot of stress, to know that life will still march on, even without a job, for half a year or so.
Life tip 2: make a budget. Even if you make 150k per year. Even if you make 15k per year. Money flies out the window so easily when we don’t pay attention to it. That’s how my money would fly right on over to Discover every month. I just wasn’t paying any attention to it. And for years, I paid WAY too much for car insurance. I switched companies and save 800 per year..SAME exact freakin’ insurance policy, but a different company..I wish I switched years ago.
And I KNOW I am overpaying my cell phone bill. I know I can get a cheaper plan elsewhere. That is my next money goal- cheaper cell phone plan.
Life tip 3: Don’t take my blog too seriously. I’m just an old millenial who is trying to make it in this scary world.
okay, time to go stare at my checking account for an hour.