Today’s world of easy electronic commerce certainly has its advantages. However, for people of a certain generation, paying with actual currency had a way of cementing into their mind the value of money. Tapping a screen and ending a transaction in only a few seconds flat reduces the tangibility of money; reaching into your wallet, pulling out cash and seeing how little you have left causes you to stop and think for a moment. Maybe I should spend less on today’s purchases? Is there anything I don’t really need?
Credit cards cause young people a great deal of problems. The freedom to get what they want, when they want it is a huge temptation and significant debt soon accumulates. Lines of credit are the same way. People who have maxed out their credit cards then turn to their lines of credit to pay the monthly minimum and continue their out of control spending habits. It catches up to most people in the end. A Global News report relayed some pretty grim data from Statistics Canada: for every $1 that Canadians make working, they now have accumulated $1.67 in debt. You don’t need a degree in financial studies to know that this is not sustainable. In fact, outright disaster is on the horizon for an increasing number of people.
Don’t get us wrong: these debts are not entirely due to frivolous credit card purchases. But they do reflect a growing problem among Canadians. We need to get a better idea of what we can spend and how we can best spend it. Until that happens, debt levels will continue to creep up and the number of citizens feeling the pinch and the pressure will also climb.
If you find yourself unable to stay on budget, consider seeing a financial planner for advice. That money is better spent than having to waste countless amounts on interest in the years to come.