No one sets out with the goal of being broke for the rest of his life, or does he? We all say that we want to have a comfortable retirement and that we want to stop worrying about finances, but is that what we really mean?
Is what you say and what you do the same?
If you’re taking these actions, you may actually want to remain broke for the rest of your life:
1. Take out as many student loans as possible. College is expensive, right? Take out as many student loans as possible and use them to avoid a drab college existence. Instead of sharing an apartment, get your own place and deck it out with new furniture. Don’t forget to pay for it all with student loans. While you’re at it, take a few vacations, ideally outside of the country. Hey, you’re only young once, and you have the student loan money.
2. Pick a major only based on what you love. Perhaps you love English, as I do. Go ahead and get that English B.A., but don’t think too much about the fact that by itself it’s worthless. You’ll either need to go to graduate school (and take out more loans) or make sure to also get an elementary or secondary teaching degree.
3. By the biggest house you can based on the loan you qualify for. You want a nice house with plenty of space to entertain and have children. The bank wouldn’t agree to loan you money if you couldn’t afford the whole amount, right? Buy as much house as you can. Don’t even think about spending less than what the bank tells you that you can spend. Don’t worry about property taxes or utilities, both of which will likely cost more in a larger, more expensive house.
4. Buy on credit, but only make the minimum payments. Everyone has debt, right? It’s just a way of life. Sure, you have a balance on your credit card. No big deal. So does everyone else. You can still afford the minimum payments, so you’re just fine.
5. Buy the nicest car you can lease. A car defines who you are and how successful you are. You can’t drive a used car, and certainly not a sedan. Instead, lease a new, sporty car that tells the world you have arrived. Three years later, repeat the process again. Only losers buy a car and drive it for 10 years until it has over 100,000 miles on it and is starting to rust. You’re smarter than that.
6. Don’t do a budget. Budgets are for poor people, right? You’re not poor. Look at your nice house and your newly leased car. Poor people couldn’t afford these things. As long as you can meet all of your monthly obligations, you’re doing just fine. Besides, a budget would cramp your style.
What do your actions say about you? Do you want to get ahead financially, or are you comfortable with the status quo, even if that means owing hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt? Are you thinking about your life right now, or are you willing to delay gratification to make your future better?