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WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Discuss Finances Here. *Note, this is not a replacement for Professional advice and should not be used for such.

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WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Lifelong Survivalist » Fri May 13, 2016 11:13 am

I am DEBT FREE and very proud of it. What's in my wallet? Cash. I hate debt. There are several reasons why I seldom use a credit card, but first I have some other things to say. For most of my life I was in debt. I started building credit at age 12. Amazing thing for a kid back in the early 1960s, but I worked and everyone in town knew it. I lived in a small town of 5500 population. There were many ways that I earned money. I had things on layaway in several stores and businesses. I did not learn everything from my parents, but I observed how my Mother kept her budget. I started out small. I wanted to play baseball in the summer kids Rec. program. It cost money. $5.00 to register, and pay for the team cap and "T" shirt. I did not have a baseball glove. They cost between 5 and 6 dollars back then for a good one. My family was rising out of poverty into lower middle class, so I paid for the things I needed and wanted that my parents could not afford to buy for me. I worked hard, did a good job, I took pride in my work. I was industrious and ambitious. Some of the odd jobs were hard, some were easy. When I became an adult, I easily obtained more credit. I got revolving credit at local stores and businesses. Bank loans, 2 prestigious credit cards. Car loans. Then Gas credit cards, Penney's Sears, etc. Everything seemed to be going great. I paid my bills on time. Then it happened. Union labor strikes, out of work, and the beginning of the Recessions that continued to this day. Every few years another recession. There never was a full recovery from any of them. I lost my major job. Owed a lot of money, or so I thought, but not by today's debt averages. I was in financial trouble and had never been through that before. I spent nearly the next 4 decades in debt. I became a slave to my debt. It influenced every life decision that I was faced with. It ruled my life. It was like being in chains with a steel ball attached. I had a 600 pound Gorilla on my back. I was constantly hounded by letters and phone calls, day and night from creditors. My credit was ruined and in a shambles. There were no bailouts. I lost a lot. Interest on debt mounted. Life became a constant struggle for survival. Bankruptcy was out of the question. I owed the money and would find an acceptable way to earn the money honestly and pay it back honestly. I was trapped on a roller coaster that never stopped and had very high highs and very low lows. I became totally debt free in 2008. The Gorilla was off my back and the ball and chain were removed. I then slowly began to very carefully re-establish my credit, first with my bank, and then with credit cards. I did not get the cards to use to do it all over again. DEBT IS A FORM OF SLAVERY. Now if I use a card it is rarely and knowing that I will be able to pay it in full on the very next statement. Credit card companies and banks hate card holders like me. I pay no annual fees, no late charges or penalties, and no interest at all. It costs them money to have me and they do not make a cent from me. They try every trick in the book to make money from me, all of which I ignore. What's in my wallet? Cash! :-) Lifelong
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby dmwalsh568 » Fri May 13, 2016 11:51 am

Only debt I have is a home mortgage and a zero percent car loan (kind of silly to pay up front when the car dealership was willing to give us 60 month financing at zero percent.) But I have three credit cards in addition to my ATM card (not a debit card.) One credit card both my wife and I have cards for the same account, and the other two are independent...one VISA the other is MasterCard. I only charge things I know I can pay for even if disaster happens (assuming the banks are working, if they aren't open then I'll pay them when they reopen.)

Why three cards? Well, if my wallet is stolen or my wife's purse, our shared card is inaccessible until the card company sends a new set out. And having two other cards gives me flexibility if a credit card network goes offline. Has that happened to me? Not yet, but as you might guess since I'm a member here, I like to prepare for unexpected problems. And before anyone asks, yes I always carry enough cash for my daily needs plus a prepping cushion in case I need something urgently and all credit card networks are offline. Haven't had to dip into that yet, but again...prepping. :floppytongue:

The key for me is to make sure I pay every credit card off every month so they don't charge me interest. And I prefer credit cards over debit cards because they have more consumer protections if there are fraudulent charges. But don't think the credit card companies don't make money off people like us, they may not make as much off us, but they charge the stores transaction fees which are larger than their costs so they get a small profit (times millions of transactions....) :smartass:
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby JayJay » Fri May 13, 2016 12:17 pm

The key for me is to make sure I pay every credit card off every month so they don't charge me interest

EXACTLY!! When using card for Lowe's, etc. or online, the purchase price goes in an envelope in a drawer and is mailed when statement is delivered--not one day after, not one week after, but that day. Important!!

I love the points I get and can use automatically now @ Amazon.

YES!! I use the credit card --it doesn't use me.
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Blondie » Fri May 13, 2016 12:22 pm

There are a few good 0% credit card offers if you qualify.

I only had 1 cc until I logged in one day to find "account review". They asked for updated income info. Not a problem but for 3 days I had no available credit line until they completed their review so I decided to get a 2nd card.

I had a property under contract and paid the home inspector with a cc, not debit or cash. Completely unhappy with their inspection & report (major issues were magically removed) I filed a dispute with the cc company and got my $ refunded to me.

Try getting your cash back.
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby LetsPrep11 » Fri May 13, 2016 12:42 pm

Good Post!

I normally pay with cash. Just have one credit card, mainly for on-line purchases, a couple of bills paid automatically with the card, and for trips. It gets paid off when the bill arrives. Fortunately, I've been budget minded since childhood, so I've never had a problem managing money. My sister, on the other hand, constantly needs bailing out. Now my younger son's wife has gotten them in the same position. He's like me, 'Needs, not Wants', while she's, 'I Want, I Buy'. He's finally put his foot down.
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Lifelong Survivalist » Fri May 13, 2016 1:53 pm

Very glad to hear that you are doing so well in this area. Some negative things about credit cards: they track your spending and share the details whether they say they don't or not. You will get more junk mail in your mail, and offers, and sales junk, email offers etc. They have lots of gimmics, they tend to allow credit lines and limits that are too high, and tempt you to use it more than you should. They are tempting to use, and too easy to use for those who have low will power or mismanage their finances and budgets. Buy now, pay later...if you can. They offer a minimum payment due that does nothing but pay interest on the debt if that. Minimum payment does not go on the principle of the debt. You do not make progress on paying off the debt doing that. All previous posters know these things, I am sure. They're waaay to easy and convenient to use. Yes, there is a BIG difference between need and want. Sometimes arguments arise in marriages and relationships about this and I have seen many a marriage fail and relationships fail also as a result of conflict about debt. A LONG time ago, before credit cards some Company employers had "Company Stores" with credit for their employers. They debt was withheld from the employee's pay each week or month, and the goods and needs in those stores was marked up way over normal prices elsewhere. Another form of SLAVERY. Then came the labor unions in attempts to break the chains of slavery in low wages and the Company store debts. Many workers were killed or murdered during the formations of the various Labor Unions. Steel workers, auto workers, teamster's ,Construction Craftsmen, factory workers, Longshoresmen, AFLCIO, Railroad workers, equipment operators, laborers, retail clerks, fabrics and textiles, mills, etc. etc. Union busting began in the late 1970s and continued through the Reagan admin. Union workers made livable wages, help to hold families together, and society together and allowed women to be house wives and better Mothers with more family time. This fits into the dots, and puzzle pieces of the BIG Picture. Sometimes people learn and find out the "hard way", and for some it is the only way they learn the hard lessons. Civilian non governmental personal private debt in America has now topped 1 Trillion Dollars. ($1,000,000,000,000.00). American population is around 357 million people, I think. Subtract the child and part of the elderly population and the rest owe the Trillion. When I was young a bank loan or Mortgage required a minimum of 10% down payment and interest was high on loans. Savings interest was nearly 5% compounded between quarterly and annually, depending on where it was..Credit union, savings and loan, or in a bank. Debt has a LOT to do with personal freedom. Beware of Bonus and point and discount cards for preferred customers. They track your spending in every detail and share that info. including all personal info you provided to obtain that swipe card. Save you money, perhaps, protect your privacy, certainly not. :-) Lifelong
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Gunns » Fri May 13, 2016 2:03 pm

I have use my credit cards all the time. I have no problem with them. I just pay them off every month to skip the interest.

I have been debt free for over a decade. I am 58 now and pay only cash for big ticket items, not that I am rich, but I still work full time and with no debt it doesn't take much time to build up some savings to buy what you need. We also tend not to buy the junk others have. My older brother put it succinctly, "you live a very frugal lifestyle".

Hell I still have my grandmothers couch, it has to be just about as old as me, though I have had it recovered twice you can't buy a couch like this anymore. 12 foot long made of solid lumber, no joiners.

I also have my mom and dads chairs they used in their office 20 years ago. My grandfathers cloths cabinet, grandmothers end tables.

Its amazing how much you can save when you don't buy a bunch of useless junk.
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Blondie » Fri May 13, 2016 2:12 pm

Go out to: optoutprescreen.com

Legit site. You can opt out (even permanently) from being offered cc and insurance offers in the mail. If you put a freeze on all 3 credit agencies it will keep most companies from snooping and limiting offers.

Your cc company can send you offers but you can limit much of what they share about you with other companies by logging into their website & making choices.

Foolproof? No, but it limits a lot of junk sharing. I get 1 or 2 pieces of junk mail a year.
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Lifelong Survivalist » Fri May 13, 2016 2:20 pm

Way to go Gunns! Good on you! Re-use, recycle, restore quality things, pass them on down to surviving family members. Frugality and thriftiness are not "dirty" words. Tey do not mean cheap, or greedy or stingy or selfish. They indicate WISDOM and common sense. :D :clap: :shakeyes: :thumbup: :thumbsup: :-) Lifelong
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Lifelong Survivalist » Fri May 13, 2016 2:35 pm

I know, Blondie but they do that because it is a hassle and time consuming for people to do it, so they count on many people not doing it. Guess what I do with my JUNK MAIL. I tear it up into small pieces, or shred it and save it in my black Contractor sized trash bags as fire starter bags. For wood stoves, campfires, etc. And laugh as I do so. It becomes a Prepper item and one that I can share with trusted friends. All I have to do is tie it shut securely and keep it dry. Of course I have the space in my shop to keep it in. I especially like to tear up Publisher's Clearing House junk mail. I get about 10 pounds or more a month. It has added up quickly. It is mixed with empty food boxes, beverage boxes and a varied assortment of other scrap paper. Yeehaw! :D :shakeyes: :-) Lifelong
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby daaswampman » Sat May 14, 2016 8:50 am

I use credit cards for everyday items and pay in full every month. If you have the discipline not to overspend, they offer a few advantages. I do not hesitate to ask for a discount for cash on some items (works well in owner run stores like antique shops etc.). They are also faster than cash when buying things like gas and a necessity for stuff like car rentals and motels.

At the same time there are things like ammo, that I only pay for with cash. I used to hate it when they started asking for my zip code for ammo purchases. Now I just type in 20500. I wonder if anyone will ever ask why the White House buys so much ammo in Northern Louisiana? Swamp
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Excaliber » Sat May 14, 2016 8:52 am

I started, some time ago, taking my junk offers with postage paid envelopes and send it right back to them. It has helped to stop it. All the other junk goes right in the ole wood burner. Nothing goes in the trash.

Now the ones I send back I tape around the edges of the envelope to make it as hard as possible to get into. :o
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Lifelong Survivalist » Sat May 14, 2016 10:40 am

Excaliber, That send back definitely sends an unmistakeable message back to the original sender. And they end up paying the return postage as well as the original postage. Each one you do that with costs the original sender right close to a buck or so. That could get expensive for companies if everyone did that. I think it might even reduce the amount of junk mail sent out nationwide if that idea caught on with the General Public. Many years ago, I would just send back the postage paid envelope empty. Same message basically, or fill out an application or what ever with totally false and fictional information. Again, same message, different methodology. :rofl: :thumbsup: :shakeyes: :-) Lifelong
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby Lifelong Survivalist » Sat May 21, 2016 6:04 pm

If you have not used one, and have no balances, and you suddenly get a statement from one, a red flag should go up the pole immediately at light speed. That would indicate an error or unauthorized use or ID theft, requiring immediate action on your part and the credit card company's part. There is a time sensitive limit to deal with the problem in writing with back up hard copies on paper of all correspondence between you the card holder and them the card issuer. But be sure to call them first to alert them, deactivate your card, and get the name of the person you spoke to on the phone and write it down along with a number the customer service rep will give to you to identify your call and the incident. What's in my wallet? CASH. :-) Lifelong
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Re: WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET? WHY I SELDOM USE CREDIT CARDS.

Postby PatrioticStabilist » Wed May 25, 2016 10:18 am

I have credit cards, 4 I think, we never have owed a balance. We always lived within our means, if we didn't have the
money we didn't spend it. But hubby and I were careful. Our parents on both sides preached no debt, no debt, we did
the same to our son. When he finally gets back in the states he said he can pay cash for a house and also for his sons
education. He is thriftier then us I think. Good kid, served his country all his life too and still is.

Anyway, I have one for Macys the sales there are awesome and with the rewards card I have actually been able to buy for
practically nothing, I pay the balance off then at the register or when I get home. Just got one for Pennys same deal, tons
of savings, we never pay interest. Also have one for rentals. We are setting up an LLC soon so will change
things for that. We never had a problem with debt so no problem with credit cards. And I guess we were fortunate, by
paying cash and not giving card companies all that interest gave us more to spend and save. We both grew up so poor
we have always felt rich and have everything we want. But maybe our wants are less.
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