Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Cash vs Cards

One way that Caleb and I keep our spending down (like crazy) is by carrying cash. When I tell people this, they usually think we're crazy. Now there is no right or wrong way to pay for things! We'd just rather save up and pay for something we really want in cash, than be in more debt to someone. I have a tall, red wallet from Dave Ramsey just like the one below...and its incredibly organized. Everyone is different, but we keep our envelopes in four sections; Groceries, Fun, Tithe, and Gas. I'll keep my debit card sometimes for gas, but I notice when there is cash in my checking account, I'll try to spend it.


So why do we believe in using cash only?

It's emotional. Spending $4 at Starbucks doesn't hurt near as bad when I use my debt card, because I don't see the money physically coming out of my bank. When I use my $20 bill that I give myself once, maybe twice a month...I don't want to break that bill. I think twice about what I spend because once its gone, its GONE. 

It speaks louder than a credit card. When Caleb and I made our first big finally-married purchase together (our couches), we were paying with cold, hard, CASH. We weren't financing, we weren't talking about interest rates, and we definitely weren't going in debt over it...having cash in hand helped get us about $300 off the total, and guess what? It was actually OURS when we took them home, not "until we paid it off".

It's convenient. Sometimes I'll run into a gas station just for a $2 pop, and they won't accept a debit card on purchases under $5, etc...so every now and again, those situations pay off to have cash.

It makes you feel awesome. When you can decide that you're going to SAVE for something, and not just charge it to a card because you think you deserve it...it gives you a different outlook. You have a sense of accomplishment when you can EARN something and say you paid for that in full. No strings attached, no interest rates, no worrying about minimum payments, etc.

Some people will never agree with this method of thinking...and you know what? That's alright. Just because it works for us, doesn't mean its the ONLY way to live. Now, don't get me wrong...we still use our debit card, but keep in mind, that's coming straight out of our BANK account. Obviously, we plan to have a mortgage someday, but we'd like to save a huge down payment first - so we aren't stuck in an apartment for life! ;)

I do have to say, stalking Etsy for cuter "cash envelopes" gets me pretty darn excited. #nerdalert Like this one;
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Or to go the cheaper route (which I recommend) you can order directly off Dave's website and get paper envelopes that fit inside a long wallet, like me!

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Or buy these cute little printable dividers!

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Whatever you decide to do...or are already doing, just be sure it works for you! :) do any of you use cash only for certain purchases?

20 comments:

  1. I love this. We use envelopes in our safe to put away cash for big things. Right now they are most wedding related. I need to start doing this daily.

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  2. This is such an awesome idea! I really need to get on this "cash only" train. I always have that "oh crap I spent how much this month" when I check my account. haha

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  3. Cash hurts so much more when you spend it for sure! We try so hard to pay for things with real money whenever possible instead of swiping.

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  4. I hardly ever have cash on me and I think I need to get on this train! You're right - having to break a $20 definitely makes you think more than when you just hand over your debit card! My bank offers free financial counseling and I keep saying I'm going to do. I'm going to make an appointment this week!

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  5. Ooo! I love those little cash dividers. I need those! I barely ever use cash, but I should! I feel like it would make me a lot more frugal and better with my money. =)

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  6. So funny, you and I have the exact same money saving philosophy, but we're the exact opposite! For me, I NEVER carry cash. However, I stalk my checking account regularly. So, if I get say a $50 bill for my birthday I will spend it so much faster because it doesn't change the number I see when I check my balance. In my mind it's like Monopoly money! So I try and deposit any money I get right away, since I don't want to see my balance go down! I get emotional when I part with that nice big number haha. I'm like you though, I never spend what I don't have, and only have a credit card since you can't survive without credit. But, I just use it for groceries and pay it off in full every month. That way we don't have to worry about any debt but I won't need my dad to cosign major purchases for the rest of my life!

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  7. I'm the same way as Robin above. If I receive cash as a gift or otherwise carry it, I think of it like a free splurge because it never hits my bank account and is "hidden" out of view. I also think it's ok to leverage debt for bigger purchases, especially if it takes us the same amount of time to save up for a purchase as it will to pay down a 0% interest loan. But major kudos to you for having a simple system to work with! Our household budget is a 27-tab excel spreadsheet!

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  8. I need to get back to this! I was doing well and then things got crazy!

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  9. We've been talking about possibly using more cash. I'm kind of the opposite way with money. I creepy stalk my bank account (not creepy if it's mine I guess, ;)) and get pains from when I see the number go down. When I have cash I go crazy and spend it and then I'm like, wait?! I just had a $20?! Ha, but I definitely see the benefits of using cash in certain situations. Ohhhh, money.

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  10. GET IT. ;) I also creepy stalk our bank account. Like daily, without fail! lol

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  11. Oh man I just can't commit to this no matter how much I know it will help haha (part of it is probably because our bank isn't local and getting money out is a huge pain!) but I am a religious stalker of our bank account. We do follow Ramsey's principles though and they're the best!

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  12. Ugh lucky ducks with the $300 off for paying cash. We tried that at a few places and no one was open to the discount. However I had researched the heck out of all the furniture we purchased to make sure we were getting a good deal because like y'all i refused to make payments. The down payment on the house is HUGE it can affect so may parts of the buying process

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  13. I probably should start doing this a little bit more because I never have cash on me. We put everything on our credit card - but we pay it off in full every month! It's definitely easier to rack up the spending that way, and I've thought about trying to use cash more often just for that reason, but at the same time the rewards from using the card are just too good! Like I said, we never carry a balance and we end up getting $1000+ cash back every year. Might as well get paid for spending money we would have spent regardless!

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  14. I think it's a great thing to pay with cash. You're so right....a $4 drink is no big deal with a debit card, but when you're breaking a $20, it requires a little more thought.

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  15. My hubby and I did the Financial Peace University class at our church and it was great! If I had that cute etsy divider I would for sure do the money envelope system! :)

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  16. I'm a DR gal or I should say WE are a DR family :) I am carrying cash for everything! We graduated from his class three weeks ago!

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  17. You know, I use my card alot because I never usually have cash but I neve thought about it. It is kind of sad to see the cash go over the debit where you don't until you log on.

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  18. that's an amazing idea!! we read financial books and everything we've read recommends doing just that - carrying cash instead of cards! :)

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  19. We do cash, too. Things always get out of control when we try to use our cards instead.

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  20. That recipe looks amazing. I might have to attempt a gluten-free version. Also, I like the idea of using cash. I'm not sure I could commit, but I think it's a brilliant way to spend less. Also, you are so cute! And your blog design rocks. I especially love the big circular photos. Also, your husband sounds awesome. You two are a power couple. Okay, I think that's everything I wanted to say... have a great day! :)

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Thanks for your comments, I read and respond to every single one of them! :) Excited to get to know you!