Saturday, December 3, 2011
My Money or My What?
Anyways, it's not the big banks I am sick of as much as the big time scammers that somehow keep getting a hold of my debit card numbers and pins. PINS! How on earth do people snag your pin number? I did some research and it turns out that some nasty, evil people will pretend to be service repair people and then switch out credit card/debit machines for ones that track the numbers. And this must have been what happened to me twice this year. TWICE! Two different accounts! I am careful with my cards; I never write my pin number down anywhere. I cover the little pin pad with my hand if someone is close by.
Now I have made a big life style decision. I have become a woman that pays with cash. If I pay with cash, nobody can steal my debit number. My mom has been doggedly refusing to use a debit card for years, stubbornly sticking to writing checks and ranting about security. I scoffed at her. Now I agree with her. Only I don't want to write checks either.
This cash only business has all sorts of implications in my life. It is a bit of a pain to go into the bank and withdrawal my month's money. But it also means I am sticking it to the big bank anyways because they are not going to get a cut of the Visa fee on a debit transaction anymore. Everyone around me keeps screaming Shop local! Shop local! But they are all using their debit cards and taking a ding out of that local merchant so that a bank can make more money.
The best thing about this, but also the most challenging, is that I have to stick to a budget. I've read this in finance books for years and mostly shrugged my shoulders about it but you do spend less, much less, if you stick to cash. You think a little harder before making that purchase. Is that exactly what you want to give up your cold hard cash for? With our new house our expenses have gone up quite a bit so it won't be a bad thing if I can set a little extra money aside.
I only started today and can't give much feedback yet about the process but I did notice that at the grocery store I was much more conscious of whether items were entirely necessary or not. And when I went to get coffee beans I usually get an americano at the same time but I thought, nah, I'll just go home and make coffee instead.
See? It's changing me already!