This Week Around The Web

1. Reformed Credit Card Users

Debt Discipline — For more than 20 years Brian abused credit cards. He received his first card at age 18 — with no explanation regarding proper credit use. I guess that’s not surprising. Most young people aren’t educated in personal finances and, as a result, make bad decisions.  In Brian’s case, he says he enjoyed having “immediate access to spending when cash was not available.”

That’s a red flag. And as he got older, married and had kids, his situation became worse. He signed up for more cards and his monthly payments were nearly $2,000 a month. He finally hit rock bottom. That’s when he and his wife realized that they must change their spending habits. Check out how Brian reformed and how he uses credit cards today. Also, read this post on learning about credit cards before you end up in debt.

2. Are You Your Parents’ Retirement Plan?

Broke Millennial — This blogger can talk about money and the future with her parents. Her father even jokes about which child will receive the largest portion of the inheritance. But she’s not expecting a financial “windfall” when her parents pass away. And it’s okay with her because she’s saving for her own retirement and more.

What concerns her is the reaction she receives after telling her friends about these discussions. They are basically aghast. They never discuss money and the future with their parents. And that’s dangerous because, as she says, “it’s imperative to begin budgeting and saving early” if you’re going to take care of them once they’re very old. Read about what you should discuss with your parents in this blog and read this blog on how to save for retirement if you’re worried about the future.

3. Money is a Tool, Not the Goal

The Wild Wong — Kristen finds that if she doesn’t have a purpose or a reason for saving money “that is both specific and meaningful” she’ll use her money “in the worst possible ways.” For example, after saving for a European vacation she found herself spending money on crap like “vintage Garfield” the cat mugs. She lost her purpose.

As a result, she believes that money itself is not the goal, it’s a tool for reaching goals. She lists five things that can happen if you make money the goal. The fourth is: “You start hoarding money instead of using it.” For more money-saving help, read this post on saving money by ignoring it.

4. Not All Purchases Are Bad, and Here’s Why

Break The Twitch — Anthony starts this blog by examining a “bad purchase”: People waiting in lines for 12 hours or more for a new iPhone “only to pay full retail price for a new phone.” And then they leave the store cheering. I think it’s hysterical and I agree with him.

He believes good purchases provide experiences and the opportunity to create something. His big purchases are mostly video and camera equipment. He creates with them and they’re also a “potential revenue source.” He discusses purchases he avoids and also admits that people may view bad purchases differently. For some fun reading, check out what pet owners waste money on.

5. Your Smartphone Could Be Seized By Criminals Demanding Ransom 

Money Talks News — It looks like large organizations and corporations aren’t the only ones threatened by ransomware attacks. Now ordinary citizens are targets. As a matter of fact, a report by Kaspersky Lab “says its detection rate for mobile ransomware quadrupled in one year.”

The report doesn’t shed light on how people stumble upon mobile ransomware, but unwittingly downloading or installing malicious software is obviously a factor.  Bob provides five ways you can avoid this growing danger. The first way is downloading and installing backup software. Here’s another post regarding digital extortion.



Posted in: Budgeting & Saving, News