Spent The Movie - Solutions for Change
- Created on 19 June 2014
American Express has sponsored an interesting documentary which takes a look at a large group of people in this country which don't or can't (for a myriad of reasons) use mainstream banking institutions to manage their personal finances. A new label is floating around, "financially under-served".
I'll admit, when I first learned about Spent: Looking for Change - a film about personal finances sponsored by a credit card company - I was skeptical. However, I do appreciate whoever decides to shine a light on a problem that impacts 1 in 4 households in this country. As the film illustrates, there is a poverty profit sector of business that takes advantage of the less educated, those in financial distress, or those who just refuse to do better. Again, there are a myriad of reasons people find themselves in the cycle of using payday loans, rapid refund, or pawn shops. From the movie, I have had to adjust my understanding of the types of people who use these services on a regular basis.
I hesitate to lay all blame on the individual or on the poverty profit businesses for seizing an opportunity. It seems more useful to find solutions. How can 70 million financially under-served Americans be helped or help themselves out of these vicious cycles? Should we even try to work up to a solution for an instant gratification society who has options and may just choose not to employ the better options at hand? I'm asking provocative questions because I'm generally interested and want to hear from you. Please watch the video and let's continue the great conversation that started on our Facebook page below.
- Created on 12 June 2014
Many blogs on this site are ripped from the headlines of my personal experiences. After all, I’m an expert on me and my experiences are fairly common. Just the other day, I’m speaking with a friend about plans, issues, and future goals. She makes an interesting comment, “I’m over this ownership thing.” Growing up, ownership was always drilled into my psyche. Ownership, ownership, ownership. It seems ownership makes the best sense only when you are prepared: mentally and financially.
My own husband made an emphatic declaration recently – “… our next move is back to a condo!” He didn’t care where or how, but absolutely no house. Let’s assume frustration with a leaky water heater and the prospect of an air conditioner malfunction as the summer heats up were talking. Two months after moving in, that’s enough to drive anyone bonkers. Which is better – rent or buy?
- Created on 04 June 2014
In my other life beyond the Debt Free Divas, I run a community Laundromat with my wonderful husband. The experience has been filled with trials, triumphs and tests of wills. We’ve bounced back from stolen power lines, questionable employees, and general fatigue common with keeping a struggling business a float. After 10 years, we’ve hit a snag that might be a game changer.
We are well aware that most small businesses fail. However, I think like most entrepreneurs, we pushed forward with an optimism that in some ways is part delusional. We invested a massive amount of time and treasurer into the endeavor because we believed that we could overcome the obstacles. This effort was not just a business, we also saw it as a mission field. What better way to build relationships with people in a community than to spend time with them while washing. That was our plan.