By Julie Jaggernath
If you could trap a tricky little leprechaun, what would you ask him about being debt free? March 17 is a day when many people wonder what riches or treasures might be waiting for them at the end of the rainbow. While a leprechaun saves his gold and doesn’t need to use credit, what would he tell you about finding your own treasure?
1. It Doesn’t Matter If Your Credit Card Limits Are High or Low, They Can Still Lead to Debt
The first “treasure” that comes to mind is when people discover the convenience of their first credit card. At first the spending limit seems like an endless supply of free money, but those who fall prey to the temptation of spending more than they can afford to pay back, soon discover that their new-found treasure is anything but.
Regardless if your credit card limit is high or low, what you spend is still debt. And the more debt you have to repay, the harder it is to find money in your budget to save and get ahead.
2. Debt Consolidation with a Mortgage Can Use Up Your Home Equity
A second “treasure” that many homeowners discover is the “miracle” of using their house to pay off their debts with a mortgage debt consolidation loan. This can either be a second mortgage or the refinancing of the first mortgage to include the debt that’s being consolidated.
Sometimes it’s worth using carefully built up equity and letting a house lend a hand. However, if the debts and maxed out credit cards are due to spending more than you earn, the leprechaun wants you to know that relying on your house as an ATM or to consolidate debt can spell trouble down the road when your luck runs out.
3. Balance Your Personal Budget and Create Your Own Luck
The third “treasure” is little more elusive and can be harder to find. Some folks depend on “lady luck,” playing the lottery or banking on winning big to balance their personal budget and plan for the future. Others face unexpected expenses that they just can’t manage.
There’s no time to look for a rainbow when you’re running from one rain cloud to the next. Instead of counting on a lucky streak, create your own and stash your cash. Working towards a balanced budget lets you save and spend according to your priorities and what’s important to you. It also means having what you need when you need it. Kind of like your own pot of gold.
Leprechauns Might Just Know More About Saving, Using Credit Wisely and Being Debt Free Than We Think!
As the leprechaun wisely reveals, the only pot of gold is the one we create for ourselves by saving, using credit wisely and having a plan for being debt free.
While your gold card may seem like a pot of gold, as all clever little leprechauns know, things aren’t always as they seem.