I’ve been dealing with a credit card bill for a while now. It wasn’t a concern at first because I had a zero-percent interest credit card, and I was paying more than the minimum each month. However, I was also still purchasing things every month. Last year, my credit card bill was in the $8,000 range, and it stayed like that for a few months even though I was paying $1,000-$2000 a month on it (because I was also spending the same amount each month).
After my last girlfriend and I broke up, money got tighter, and I wasn’t able to pay more than $300 a month on my credit card (I was now living alone and paying all the rent, utilities, etc.). When my father was diagnosed with cancer, he asked me to move in with him to help him out. This helped me financially because I was able to cut costs and start paying $1,000 a month (sometimes more, sometimes a little less) on my credit card. And yes, I’ve still been purchasing things as needed.
Luckily, I haven’t paid interest on my credit card since 2004 because I switch each year to a new zero-percent interest account. I only have $2,500 left to pay off and will have it finished by July.
I also sold my Honda S2000 in February to get out of $405/month payments (plus higher insurance and gas costs). I didn’t want to sell my car, but it was something I needed to do to save money or pay more toward bills. So I picked up a 1996 Mazda Miata in near perfect condition and only 52K miles for $6900. I paid cash through my line of credit (11% interest), and I recently transferred that account to another zero-percent interest credit card so I can pay it off quicker and not pay anymore interest (In two months, I had paid nearly $200 in interest through my line of credit. That’s equal to one monthly payment. So I was determined to get rid of interest to pay it off quicker).
So, I have two credit cards (one Visa, one Mastercard). Both have zero-percent interest, and I have a balance of $2,500 on one and $6,500 on the other. One will be paid off by summer. The other will be paid off by next fall (or sooner). My only other debt is my school loan (~$3,600) and my monthly fixed costs (food, gas, utilities, cell phone, insurance, etc).
I use one paycheck per month to pay on the credit card. The other paycheck goes toward everything else.
As for my credit, I’ve kept it in outstanding condition through all this. In fact, my recent credit score put me at 790. I also check my credit every few months to make sure nothing funny is going on, and I always make my payments on time and pay more than the minimum.
As for Rich Dad, Poor Dad and The Millionaire Mind, they have definitely affecting how I think about money and how I plan on making my financial future. You will see the mistakes that poor and middle-class people make (I had been doing the same) and how rich people think and do differently.
Everyone has the ability to be rich. If you read the books, you’ll understand what that means and how it can happen. I have definitely changed my thinking, and I will overcome my debts and all other issues I’ve dealt with in the past 1 1/2 years, and I plan on becoming rich in the future. You can too.