So here's my question. Is the first piece of mail you save and open the 0% interest, balance transfer, credit card offer? Do you open this even before you open your bills? Do you open your credit card bills last, if at all? Do you do so with apprehension? How is it when you pay that bill? Do you pay in full? Do you pay the minimum due? Do you do a private happy dance if you can pay $5.00 over the minimum due or even $10.00 over?
According to Fair, Isaac & Company, the average American household has nine credit cards. How do you fair to the American Average? Can you relate to any of these statistics?
37% of consumers carry more than $10,000 in unsecured debt.
The average consumer has upwards of $19,000 on all cards combined.
One in seven uses 80% of their available credit.
The average credit card balance is between $7000 and $10,000.
Over 90% of American's disposable income goes to paying debts.
In dealing with so many things that feel out of our control, credit card debt is something you can overcome, get ahead of and take control over. We often talk about our mindset. 'It's never JUST about the money" When it comes to credit cards, the social narrative has tipped the focus away from what it is. "A LOAN, mind you, with interest!" That's right, I'll repeat it, credit cards are a LOAN.
1%, 2% or 5% Cash Back Offers...
In the mad crazy world of shopping perks, travel points, extra savings "if you open this account...". I want you to really think about this.... A card offers you 1%, 2% up to 5% back on purchases yet you are paying 23.99% in interest.
Are you able to pay that balance in FULL each month? If not then how is that perk REALLY working for you?
With credit being offered, marketed, and wrapped up in a pretty self-selected image imprint of American flags, kittens, or maybe you prefer hot pink or cosmic blue in your wallet? We can quickly look upon it with rose-colored glasses forgetting its true cost. I am big on knowledge is power, and when we understand something's origins, it can shed a whole new perspective or "mindset' to what something is. I encourage you to read the History of the Credit Card
Today, it is hard to imagine life without credit cards. Merchants readily accept credit cards because they know consumers buy more on credit. The average credit card purchase is 12 – 18% more than if cash was used. I want you to think about that, "The average credit card purchase is 12 – 18% more than if cash was used." Suppose we use our American Average of $10,000 of unsecured debt; that's $1,200 to $1,800. Think about what you could do with that extra cash.
Shopping with a Mindset of Hours Worked
In changing our "mindset" towards our debts, I'd like you to think about how many hours of work a purchase cost you in your time? If you shop with the mindset of hours of work, you'll be amazed at how your thinking can change.
Let's say you earn $13.00 hr and find a pair of shoes for $65.00; that's about ¾ of a day's work, not counting credit card interest if you don't pay your bill in full. Are they worth 3/4 of a day's work? Plus interest?
A little homework for you, take each credit card bill and convert the balance you are carrying on that card to your hourly salary to determine how many working hours it will take to pay it off. Play with a credit card calculator, and you'll be even more surprised.
Remember we are here when you need us to walk through spending plans, navigate credit card debt, help develop a payment plan, or review all your options. Though we did not focus on it, we do understand the use of credit cards for emergencies. We understand that a crisis can occur, and that revolving credit can be all the difference in seeing the light at the end of that current tunnel. We are here to help with those credit card issues also and work with you to get your feet back on the ground if needed.
We understand it is more than JUST about the money.