AVOID CLOUDY MONEY TRAPS WHEN STRAPPED FOR CASH
Money, Money, Money, Money is all we ever hear about on the news and how so many people are financially stressed.
The need for Canadians to earn more money is obvious with the growing homeless rate, unreasonable rental ratees and housing costs that are through the roof.
Sadly, it’s true our lives do revolve around making money and when there’s not enough to go around we find ourselves in financial desperation.
There’s no harm in wanting to make more money or seeking money-making jobs however there are lots of people who prey on those who are in financial desperation.
For many money management issues can easily transform financial desperation into financial success. Take budgeting for example, if you’re not doing it then you’re not doing your money any justice. Start there.
Money Talks and it’s a Big Business
You can read all of the money articles you want online but none of them will tell you to back away when something doesn’t sound right. The reality is that to anyone who is in a state of financial desperation all money opportunities sound legit.
Why? It boils down to need and when that arises anything is better than nothing.
This is why the black market exists, prostitution thrives and the drug cartel is buried in money because fast money, easy money and preying on innocent people in financial desperation is somewhat simple.
No, I’m not saying this is what everyone does in financial desperation rather I’m surfacing what some people turn a blind eye to see even though it’s obvious.
It’s no different from credit card companies dangling credit in your face when you need it most or allowing you to increase what you already can’t afford to pay back.
It’s no different from a bank lending you money when you’ve got your house or assets hanging in the balance.
It’s no different from someone marketing a product to you when they know it’s garbage but try to sell it to you anyways.
It’s also no different from scam artists calling or emailing you to pay up or pay the price.
Even they have a boss who pays them to scam you and they too are in a fit of financial desperation even though they know they are sucking money out of unsuspecting victims.
Do these people have a heart?
Often they do and they know what they are doing is wrong but they don’t care. Money talks.
Whether it is a legit business like banks, loan companies, credit card companies or under-world money-making operations at the end of the day your money is all they want.
Money messes with our minds
Psychologically no one wants to be broke or in the poor house so we do whatever we can and often believe whoever sounds legit when it comes to money.
What about payday loans or Cash converters?
All of these types of systems are meant to weed out the people who don’t need the services and to scoop up those in financial desperation.
It’s a money-making business and the people who are going to make them rich are the very people who rely on them or believe in shady business or employment opportunities that come with a twist once they rope you in.
Wanted For Hire
What prompted me to write this post was a Facebook employment opportunity post I started to see pop up the last few days.
The post went something like this…
Do you want to work from home and earn $20/hour? If yes, message me today as we are in desperate need of people.
Anyone should clearly be able to see how this is some form of a scam or scheme to get unsuspecting people to contact them. The key here is that it is $5 more than minimum wage in Canada and you can work from home. SCORE. Well, so you’d think.
I would NEVER respond to a random person posting in unrelated employment groups online about employment opportunities.
Even so, it’s important to be cautious anywhere you respond to online employment opportunities even though there are plenty of legit recruiters on the hunt. Due diligence is always your responsibility.
What shocked me the most was the amount of responses. It was like rat race to get hired or a reason for people to air their needy story online so the suspected employer would pick them first.
- Me, Me, Me
- I’ll do it
- What is the job I’m ready?
- When can I start?
Who believes this kind of stuff?
Where are the red alarm bells? I see them, why can’t you?
It was comment after comment of people in what I would guess is financial desperation seeking any attempt at legitimate employment opportunities. And, it wasn’t just one Facebook page this person was posting on as I saw it on a few in groups we belong to in our community.
It saddened me to know that there are so many people struggling to make ends meet that they resort and believe such online scammers.
Number one, a good employer with an HR recruitment team doesn’t just post random messages on unrelated Facebook groups.
Number two, If it sounds too good to be true, it is.
Behind Closed Doors
I couldn’t understand why the people commenting were oblivious to this so I approached understanding it differently.
Then I put myself in their shoes for a minute and understood that when money doesn’t stretch far enough or there is no money coming in and bills need to be paid financial desperation kicks in.
It’s becomes more about need vs. want but this belief system can skew our views on reality vs being taken advantage of.
My mother-in-law for example was and still is horrific with money and believes everything she reads online from fake contests to applying for something to only get her personal information.
She is a believer and easily persuaded because she needed money to pay for the debts she created by applying for credit cards she couldn’t afford only to max them out buying stuff she didn’t need.
She is NOT alone because there are SO MANY people that could fill her shoes and have done or are doing the exact, same thing.
When we sorted out her mess of financial paperwork at home it was credit card applications galore, contests to win money, Readers Digest, Life Insurance plans purchased online that were shady but she believed would cover her in case of illness or death.
It was a disaster of a mess that we had to clean up and something I don’t wish on anyone. Thankfully it’s all sorted now after months of phone calls and faxes.
This is what some people do in financial desperation when they can’t work, can’t leave the home, don’t want to leave the home to work or perhaps do both work and make fast money.
In my mother-in-laws case she couldn’t work for health reasons but she sure knew how to spend money when her husband or someone took her out.
Even people who can leave find themselves in this mess because they seek extra income that they can earn from home to pay for debt.
Financial desperation spares no one
Money stress can happen to everyone whether your net worth is high or you don’t have one at all.
We all have certain boundaries that we believe we need to surround ourselves to make us financially successful and unfortunately in times of financial desperation we can easily be persuaded to do things we shouldn’t.
It’s a shady world out there people so please, please don’t believe everything you read or hear and take care of those people who might fall prey to money scams in times of financial desperation.
Financial Pitfalls to Avoid
- If you can’t afford a credit card don’t apply for it. Watch credit card interest rates.
- If you can’t afford a loan or mortgage don’t apply for it. Watch interest rates on bank loans and mortgage loans.
- Apply for legitimate employment opportunities only and steer clear from too good to be true.
- Don’t believe everything you read and hear about money making opportunities.
- Don’t believe bankruptcy is your only option. Seek financial advice from an in-person advisor.
Lastly, if all you want is some extra cash find something you’re good at and market it.
Perhaps you like to bake cookies and can decorate like a pro. Sell them.
If you have skills that others want you can easily make money but you have to be willing to do the legwork and put your name out there.
If all you want is some fast cash have a look around the house to see what is collecting dust and sell it. That’s the easiest way to earn cash fast on items you already own.
There’s no free ride in this world and behind every person, every company and any money-making opportunity there is an agenda, so beware.
Discussion: What other things should people be aware of when they find themselves in a state of financial desperation? Leave your comments below.
Our Net Worth January 2019
What happened to our money in January?
It was nice to see our investments jump back up by 2.37% in January as they took a tumble back in December.
We were optimistic that we’d see them rise again but any investor has to have some optimism or they’d never invest in the first place.
On the other hand you have always air on the side of caution when you are investing because if your investments are tanking month after month then perhaps you’ll want to investigate as to why and whether you’re in it for the long-haul or not.
You’ll notice I updated our vehicle asset to reflect a yearly decline of $2000 because as we know most vehicles don’t increase in value.
Again we left our principle residence for 2019 at $345,000 but could easily sell the house for just under $700,000 if we sold today.
Until next month, keep an eye on your money!
Understanding Net Worth
What Does Individual Net Worth Mean?
Net Worth is a snap shot of your financial health sort of like a picture or debt to net assets. In simple terms it’s a total of the value of your assets minus your liabilities.
We credit the growth of our net worth due to patience, perseverance, using a monthly budget and not giving up. Your numbers may go up and down but don’t let the numbers scare you rather understand why and move on.
If you would like to use our budget I offer a FREE downloadable budget which I created and that you can use at home just like we do. I don’t charge for it because I want you to save money not spend more!
There are tonnes of other free printable lists offered at Canadian Budget Binder to help you achieve some of those financial goals and build your net worth.
Calculate Your net worth
Do you know how to calculate your own Net Worth?
We like to calculate our net worth every month so we know if we are still on track.
Some people calculate it yearly or quarterly but it’s up to you and how informed you want to stay.
Net Worth is only an estimate and not everyone uses the same type of figures to tally it up.
Some of you may not include vehicles like we do or leave out assets inside the home like we have. You might be that person that believes that your house should be excluded.
It depends on what you want to calculate or what you can sell today and make money on for tomorrow.
Figuring out net worth is fairly easy as long as you know your personal numbers or monthly finances which means you need to do your homework.
Net Worth is simply adding up all your assets (what you own) then taking away your liabilities (what you owe) which will give you a net worth number.
Understanding your net worth will help you determine if you are on track to meeting or beating your personal financial goals. It doesn’t get any easier than that.
Net Worth = Assets – Liabilities
Why not go ahead and calculate your own using our Free Money saving Tool Net worth Calculator (Canadian Budget Binder 2012)
When budgeting anything is possible, we are proof of that although we still have a long way to go in our journey. These are our numbers and our goals, not a means of comparison towards your own goals to others target goals.
We don’t care how much money others make or if they have a high net worth or if it is lower than ours as it’s not a competition. I hope our experiences will help guide you along your financial path working towards debt freedom.
Not everyone has the same path in life.
Some of you may have had to start over like I did or go to school a second time and now have OSAP loans to pay back.
Others may have divorced, lost money in the stock market or other investments, suffered job loss, fell ill or injured on the job and so on but you can’t let that stop you from achieving your financial goals.
Some of you may have been given trust funds, paid-for homes, paid educations or perks in life that give you a financial kick-start and that’s OK too.
Remember what I said, “It’s not about how much money you make, it’s how you save it”.
The only reason people accumulate wealth is because they know how to save or invest it wisely even if they did inherit money or win the lottery.
The smallest improvements should mean big strides in working towards reaching your goals.
Sometimes we have to fail in order to learn and we’ve all been there. Money can be an evil force for some people especially those who have a negative attitude towards their own financial situation.
I urge you to be optimistic and little by little with determination you too should see improvements, if you want that to happen.
Net worth updates 2019
Click the links below to read 2017 net worth updates to see how we made out following our own budgeting and investing rules.
That’s all for this months net worth update but please check in at the beginning of March 2019 to see how we made out in February 2019 with our financial portfolio.