"S.O.S." Your Debt - AskMrG
From the ICFE's Ask Mr. G's Library
Most people know that "S.O.S." is some type of distress call,
but most people have no idea what it means. The popular notion
is that it the letters stand for "Save Our Ship" which was used
by the military in battle. You may be surprised to know that in
reality the acrostic has no meaning at all!
The letters "S.O.S." were used as a Morse code distress
signal by the military in telegraph communications. Those
letters were chosen because they were easy to remember and easy
to use. "S" was three dots in Morse code, and "O" was three
dashes. Thus, "... --- ..." was an abbreviated way to send a
distress signal that you were in trouble and needed help.
With that said, I believe it is high time we send an "S.O.S."
call about our debt! As a veteran credit counselor in the
"trenches" with people plagued with debt problems, I am telling
you that stress from debt is at epidemic proportions!
Debt is robbing us of our happiness, our health, and our
heritage. I just read that 14% of 64 year olds will enter their
retirement with negative net worth! They have no choice after
retirement but to buy a new pair of tennis shoes and be a
greeter at Wal-Mart.
If you are tired of spending everything you make, never
having any extra, running out of money before you run out of
month, and always "robbing Peter to pay Paul", listen to me.
There is hope for you. There is something within your reach that
you can do to change things.
Send an "S.O.S." to your debt! Here's how it works.
"S". See your debts as one debt. Make a list of every debt
you have, credit cards, loans, mortgages, cars, boats, etc. Make
three columns to include the name of the debt, the current
monthly payment, and the present balance. Total each column so
you will know the total amount of debt you owe and the total
amount of monthly payments you are making. View this list as
your "enemy" over which you want to gain freedom.
"O". Offer each creditor an unchangeable payment. The monthly
payment for some debts, like credit cards, is based on a
percentage of the balance, so as the balance declines, so does
the payment request. Our plan of attack keeps each payment at
its current amount and does not reduce it, regardless of the
statement request for less.
"S". Shift payments to a different creditor once each debt is
paid in full. When one debt is paid off, shift that payment to
the next smallest debt. Now, you are paying extra on that debt
which is applied directly to its principle.
This plan would pay off $10,000 of credit debt in about seven
years instead the normal thirty years and give you a cost
savings of $10,000 and a time savings of 23 years! Eventually,
the entire monthly debt payments you are presently making would
go toward your mortgage payment! Now that's what I call a plan!
Borrowing to get out of debt is like digging a hole in the
front yard to fill in the hole in the back yard! A better
solution is to send an S.O.S. message to your debt. It is easy,
effective, and emotionally healing.
© Jim Garnett
AskMrG Financial Library
2216 SW 35th Street
Ankeny, IA 50023