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Debt Free – The Road Less Traveled

Road Less Traveled

We do not have cable, so we do not see much television in our house. We had cancelled cable for various reasons and one of them being to keep our sanity. No bad news, politics, etc… to ruin our day or get us all worked up. On a side note, politicians are the only profession I know of who can go to work, accomplish nothing and still have a job.

I mention the television, because whenever the television is on your family is being advertised to. Marketing professionals are paid to know what makes you tick and what will make you purchase a particular item. Sometimes marketing professionals use fear, passion, or a need to get you to purchase. Remember when we survived without a cell phone way back when?

  1. Now if you ask someone, they will tell you the phone gives them peace of mind, of course instead of a track phone that costs $50 for the whole year, they are paying $100/month so they can talk and text as much as they want. Even a cheap monthly plan will run $50/month, which is $600/year. This means you need to make right around $950/year to pay for your phone, for an average worker that means an extra 50+ hours (a week and a half) of work just to pay for a phone vs. 3 hours to pay for the trak phone.
  2. How many people buy a new car for the warranty? What if you bought a car 4 years old and in great condition, will it really break down enough to warrant the extra money? Warranties can be from $2,000 – $3,000, which equates to 150+ hours of work (2 and a half weeks). With just these two items you need to work almost a month, just to pay for a phone and a car warranty.
  3. Need extra cash? All the home equity loan commercials enticing you to get extra money for that family vacation, but simply adding another bill.

Those are just a few that I have seen commercials for when we do take a moment to watch some television.

Being debt free is not a road that is well travelled and there are no fans cheering you on alongside this journey. This is not the road of positive affirmations and cheers, except from you and your close family.

If you buy a new car with a big payment and debt, your friends will say “wow, nice car!” or if you get that huge house that is expensive to buy, but also has high taxes, utilities, etc… everyone will tell you how beautiful your home is. We get positive reinforcement for making purchases we cannot necessarily afford.

Remember financial freedom actually comes at a low cost. We put ourselves into our own financial handcuffs by buying now and on impulse.

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