How do you envision your retirement years? Would you be the person who in his/her sunset years is enjoying life in retirement fulfilling a Bucket List? Or would you be the person who is spending his/her sunset years paying off debt accumulated from decades of abusing easy credit?
It is easy to accumulate debt in your younger years. The banks, credit card and financing companies are in the business of selling debt. They make debt appear as an easy, quick-fix solution to acquire whatever you need.
Car? House? College education? Groceries? Even a cup of coffee – nothing is sacred. You can acquire “stuff” with a simple swipe of a card or a signature. A credit card gives you a false sense of entitlement.
The banks and credit card companies open up a deluge of commercials and aggressive advertising that are designed only for one thing – to trigger desire so that greed can rear its ugly head.
Before you know it, you are besieged with debt. It becomes overwhelming. You end up paying for a home loan for the next 20 to 30 years.
Your phone starts to ring off the hook. Collection agents are reminding you to pay off your credit card bills. The interest on the unpaid loans and other obligations are accumulating.
In a situation where your life revolves around the payment of debt, you are no longer working for the security of your family or your retirement years. You end up grinding out the 9-to-5 lifestyle by paying off the bank and other creditors.
No nest egg.
No sunset years.
No retirement cruise to the Bahamas.
It literally becomes ‘til debt do you part.
At an age where you should be relaxing by the pool side with a Mai Tai in one hand, you become more stressed out fighting out of the debt trap you created in your younger years.
Will you even see the day that you are finally free of debt? And if so, will you live long enough to enjoy the rest of your life?
The popular saying is “Health makes wealth and wealth makes health”. The phrase means that when you are young, you should stay healthy so you can continue to work at your best.
By the time you are retired, you would have accumulated enough wealth to take care of your expenses as you get older.
You’ve experienced seeing your grandparents and parents go through the ravages of aging. The constant visits to the hospital, the occasional confinement, and the monthly list of medications.
Other than that magical retirement cruise, you should always save up for your health and medical needs as you grow old.
How can you do that when you are still paying off your debts?
When you are still young and able-bodied, avoid getting into debt as much as you can.
If you need to pay for your college education, get a part-time job. Live a frugal lifestyle. Raise money by selling stuff you don’t need. Work as a freelancer and earn good money from home.
Who says you need to buy a car? A car is a depreciating asset. Take public transportation. Ride a bike. Join a carpool. Walk.
If you can’t buy a home yet, wait. There will always be opportunities in the market. Stay with your parents or in-laws.
Most of all, learn how to save. Create new wealth by investing your money wisely.
You don’t need debt to have a good life.
You need discipline and a sincere respect for hard work.