Need vs. want… That’s one of the biggest questions we need to ask ourselves whenever we make ANY purchasing decisions. It is, however, the hardest thing for me to always answer honestly. For instance, my kids NEED food. But what they need is fruits, vegetables, protein, healthy carbohydrates, and a few treats. They do not need an abundance of ice cream, candy, or fast food. They also need to be a kid, and have options for learning through play. They do not need Nintendos, Play Stations, or new movies. Shawn and I NEED transportation to get to work, church and to town. We do not need a brand new minivan, a BMW or a truck.
Once the warm weather hit, we noticed that our minivan was pumping out air that warmed the van instead of cool. We brought it in and had the freon filled, which cost $175, more than I would’ve liked, and because we did not yet have a funded car repair envelope we had to remove that money from our savings. Within 2 weeks the car was back to pumping less than warm air!!! Van check up #2 showed a hole in the A/C line to the rear of the van, thus our $175 freon charge was a waste (they didn’t catch the leak during fill up…don’t get me started!). Estimated repair? $1300. Unfortunately, we cannot pull money from thin air and our money tree has stopped producing. Therefore, there is no extra money for this repair and we are NOT adding to our debt for something that can only be considered a want (especially after a patient told me of her summer road travels, when her children were young…in a car that didn’t even include A/C). A/C, despite how we are used to it, is only a luxury. One that we are currently going without to save money, and because we don’t have any “extra” to spend on a luxury repair. It’s made trips to town a little more uncomfortable and trips that last longer a lot more uncomfortable. Considering how many years we’ve chosen to pay for wants and luxuries instead of paying off debt…this discomfort is worth it and a reminder of our ultimate goal…FREEDOM!!!!
What are you willing to go without to reach the freedom that comes from being debt free?