When I first started working at my new job last year, I met a co-worker that was disgusted at the fact that companies buy all of their products on credit and don’t pay for anything with cash until long after the product is actually received. I distinctly remember him asking rhetorically, “Why can’t companies just buy their products with cash? Why does everyone in this world need to go into debt to buy stuff? Why can’t we all just live within our means?”
Now, a year later, the story has changed. After getting his first taste of luxury with his 2008 Audi A4 (which was purchased with a loan by the way), he is now salivating for a bigger house. Instead of being content with his $120,000 condo in a great part of town, he has begun to set his sights on a $300,000 brick home with more bedrooms than he’ll know how to fill. Oh, and did I mention that he plans to fund the down-payment by borrowing from his 401(k)? I just have to shake my head at these actions, but I bet all of us have heard or seen a situation just like this one. Sure, this man is earning more money than he did two years ago, but by making the decision to upgrade his vehicles and his home, his cash flow will severely decrease to levels far below what he experienced before.
Earn More, Save More
There are quite a few people that know how to move up the ranks of the company and to earn more money with side jobs, but without the proper discipline, these extra monies will ultimately yield nothing in the long run. In fact, by purchasing more items on credit, financial destruction is more of a possibility than it was before, even though you are now earning more money.
I have a plan to earn more money, but I also have plans to save more of my money, which will ultimately be used for other investments. Instead of living by the motto of “YOLO” (you only live once, as this man reminded me), I will be living my life debt free and earning money more easily than I ever have before. My assets (such as real estate) will be earning money for me while those that are buying big houses on the lake are getting their pockets sucked out by mortgage payments and expensive repairs.
Save More, You’ll Be Happier
Do you know who the happiest people are in the world? 9 times out of 10 it’s those that live on the least of money and have a limited supply of “stuff”. The more things you own that need repair and maintenance (like homes and cars), the more headaches you will experience. Limit your depreciating assets and you will be far happier in life.
What do you think about this way of life? Will you continue to strive for stuff, or will you cut back on what you own?
This article was written by Derek Sall, owner of LifeAndMyFinances.com