Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Cash Experiment

We needed to get a hold of our expenses so I suggested that we go cash only. I thought I was a genius when we started this, until a friend told me that Dave Ramsey, a financial guru, has been talking about this for awhile now.  Hmmmm...another clever idea stolen!
Ryan agreed with my plan and we both gave up our debit cards - meaning we canceled them completely.  We are over a month into this experiment, and it may become a way of life for us because we are spending ridiculously less money. And we were fairly frugal spenders before we started.

To begin, we ate everything in the pantry and freezer. I realized I am a collector of food. I like to have it around just in case we might need something for a recipe. Now I am planning out our meals and buying what we need for the recipes for the current week. I actually use a calculator as I walk through the store so I do not go over my allotted amount.

We each carry a credit card hidden deep in our wallets in case of an emergency. So far, no emergencies.

Some of you are rolling your eyes now or have completely tuned out this post - and I agree, this is not the fun part of life - figuring out how to save money, be more responsible with spending and waiting to make purchases. We are a want it now, pay for it later type of society.

And after a month of this, I have asked myself these questions:
  • Is it less convenient? Yes.
  • Will I go back to debit cards? Possibly, but not yet.
  • Am I paying down some bills? Yes.
  • Are the tradeoffs worth it? So far, yes.
  • Is anyone suffering from the changes? I have not seen any yet, nor have I heard complaints.
So if you are wondering where you might be able to cut corners, try this for a month or so. It will raise your level of awarness about your spending habits. And may make you achieve a goal that may seem out of your financial reach. And that could make a little bit of pain worth it.

1 comment:

  1. I am working at cutting as many expenses as possible and sounds like you have found a great plan.


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