I found out that my brother just “bought” a new car. I’d like to feel happy for them but the declared bankruptcy a couple years back and lost their home, I believe it was a short sale of the house. They just could not wait to get back into debt and “playing the game”. In less than a year they had bought a used car on credit on the advice of a”financial adviser” in order to rebuild their credit rating instead of paying off the debt and getting small financially. They are renting a huge four bedroom house in a high end subdivision and it’s just the two of them living in the home and just for extra fun they have a student loan they have deferred the payments on, though it still is accruing interest! But hey they got a great deal and low payments on the new car! I feel a bit more sympathy for the moth as electricity is fairly new and the moth doesn’t get a chance to learn from it’s mistake.
This is one of the most frustrating things for me to deal with is denial and willful ignorance of family members. They all seem to be getting worse getting into debt even as the economy tanks. What scares me is they are consider the normal ones and good little consumers and I’m the weirdo. I know some people have to learn the hard way, it took me getting 100% disabled to wake me up but for gosh sakes two bankruptcies seven years apart would seem to indicate a problem with your financial planning. These folks didn’t suffer a job layoff, disaster or massive medical bills. Just plain old fashioned over leveraging and to much debt.
Kind of scary that I tried to teach them how to get debt free and live a simpler life style before they lost the house but it all fell on deaf ears. They did not see themselves as the cause of the problem, it was bad luck, the economy tanked, it happened to a lot of other people, so they could not be the problem! I’m quite concerned about all of them if the cost of living goes up as much as I think it will. I’m sort of figuring about 10-20% rise in food, energy and medical costs, add in dropping wages and hours and it looks like 2014 could be a tough year overall for the middle class and the rest of us at the bottom of the economic food chain.
As I say every person you meet can be used as an example, sometimes good and sometimes bad. I don’t waste my breath trying to convince people any longer. I’ll drop a few ideas/hints about preparing and self-reliance and if they ask then I will help if they remain open to the idea. I get some of the family members that occasionally “Humor me” about prepping and then either proceed to tell me it is somehow impossible for them to do it or they already know everything so they do not require my help. I figure eventually everyone will wake up though it might be a very nasty surprise to many people.
I need to adjust my goals for this year as the water main repair was a surprise and I should have had an emergency fund built up so I could have handled better on my own. Dad did spend to much for the repair but if I had the funds on hand to at least made good down payment on the repair I think it would have cost less over all. Sometimes you end up paying a “stupid tax”. While annoying it’s best to just learn from it and not beat yourself up. I need to work on getting the revolving credit account at Les Schwab paid off since I have the Kia’s tires and brakes done. That should be paid off by the middle of April. At this point in time the only major purchase I have forecasted is the greenhouse and I plan to spend about $200.00. I hope to get a small greenhouse with rigid walls but if it’s to expensive I’ll go with soft side walls. I’ll add any savings from paid off debt to my emergency fund and then will be time to get rocking on paying off the wood stove as the Credit Union charges me interest on that loan.
It might not be a good Christian thing to do but I would really like to surprise the parents at the end of the year with good chunk of cash as repayment for the loans they gave me to help me out. The idea I have is a bit of showing off but it is also that actions speak louder than words. Besides I tend to do better when I have a challenge that is almost impossible to do, I may not succeed but it often works out much better than any rational person would expect.