I’m good with money, and think I probably always have been. I remember when I was younger I had a stuffed Wrinkles dog that had a zipper in the bottom and I would hide some money in there so I would always have some on hand. Today I still have some hiding places where I keep money and I always try to have cash on me for emergencies or situations when a place doesn’t accept credit or debit. But I rarely spend cash. 99% of the time I buy things using my PC Mastercard which earns me PC Points which I can use to buy things at the Real Canadian Superstore (grocery store).
Now I know a lot of people are scared of credit cards. I personally have never been afraid of them. Maybe it’s because I was taught very young about money. I was always taught to save my money and to only buy things that I needed, and not things that I merely want. And I only ever spend money on my credit card if I have the money in my bank to pay it back. I have never missed paying my credit card. I think that is the key to using a credit card. You have to make sure you pay it EVERY month.
The reason I handle my money the way I do has everything to do with my parents. My dad hates spending money. He never goes on trips, he never buys things he doesn’t need, etc. Now on the other hand, my mom loves spending money. She likes to have fun and knows that you can’t just save your money your whole life. She goes on trips (often without my dad), buys clothes, buys treats at the grocery store, etc. I am a mix of both of them. If I have a extra money I tend to get a little bit careless and buy things I want even if I don’t necessarily need them. But when money is tight, I don’t have a problem not spending money. I will buy the no name brands and, to be honest, I usually prefer them over the name brands. I will portion out my food so that it lasts me the week or month that I need it to last, I will only buy clothes when my old ones have holes in them, etc.
In my next blog post I will talk about the money program I use to monitor my spending.
We have a very similar money saving philosophy. I also have a few credit cards and you are right: if you spend and pay the bill responsibly and don’t simply spend because “you can” then cards can help you build a form of credit.
I’m interested in knowing the program you use for your spending budgets because I don’t use one, but I love trying new tools.