Yesterday, Paid Twice posted the latest edition of the Carnival of Debt Reduction, and my article about my upcoming vacation made it! Also mentioned was the launch of the “Snowflake Revolution“, a place where snowflaking bloggers combine efforts to, er, create a giant snowball? Seriously though, while I won’t be a part of the Snowflake Revolution (my only good tips to add to the debt snowball is to make more money and spend less of it), I look forward to a centralized place where people can find tips on how to add a few dollars to their debt snowball. For those unfamiliar with snowballing and snowflaking, the premise is that the snowball is the amount of money you pay towards debt each month, which gathers mass as you begin to eliminate each debt. Snowflaking is obviously the art of adding small amounts to that money each month. And as we know, a few dollars per month can add up to hundreds in savings, over a long run. Viva la revolucion!
Among the articles, all of which were great, there were a few I felt stood out. We all know I’m a fan of the psychology behind why we get ourselves in these situations, and Life Lessons of a Military Wife wrote a great article about how to reject those pesky payday loan offers and get started on the road to good financial health. I have many friends I wish could have had this advice when things were looking bad.
One of my favorites was Millionaire Money Habits talking about the real cost of using credit cards. This is one of the first exercises I did to show me how terrible those pieces of plastic are. Even though I was buying stuff on sale, I imagine that $40 bargain blender has cost me several hundred dollars by now. I’m still paying off a great deal of a laptop that broke over two years ago. I’m still paying money towards an excellent deal on a premium car stereo system for a car I no longer own! When you add it up, credit cards fall way short of anything resembling common sense. Basically, if you can’t afford something up-front (except for maybe cars and houses), you simply can’t afford to buy it. Credit cards aren’t the magical golden ticket to keeping up with the Joneses.
There are several other articles I could mention, but these two stood out based on recent conversations I’ve had. Go check out the carnival! In these times of economic uncertainty and with houses foreclosing right and left, it is clear that there is at least one community of bloggers who are getting a grip on their finances the old-fashioned way–with determination.