20 things you shouldn’t do with your money.

John Cook
John Cook
Jan 27, 2019 · 2 min read

Today’s personal finance advice: just say no. Before you conjure up a one-off instance in where these rules aren’t applicable, I’d still argue that if most people followed these rules, they’d be better off financially. Credit cards, auto loans and most forms of consumer debt are the cigarettes of the financial services industry and the population-at-large would be better off without it. Just because a few people are able to benefit from credit card points, does not mean credit cards are good for society. Want a life of financial independence? Here’s 20 things you shouldn’t do:

  1. Don’t open a credit card, ever.
  2. Don’t ever finance a car.
  3. Don’t worry about your FICO score.
  4. Don’t take an early withdrawal loan from your 401k.
  5. Don’t buy trip-cancellation insurance.
  6. Don’t retire with debt.
  7. Don’t opt for the extended warranty.
  8. Don’t day trade.
  9. Don’t buy investments without first settling on your financial goals.
  10. Don’t take out a large mortgage just for the tax deduction.
  11. Don’t make minimum payments on a student loan just for the tax deduction.
  12. Don’t take out student loans for college.
  13. Don’t lend money to family members if you’ll need it back.
  14. Don’t get financial advice from your broke brother-in-law.
  15. Don’t purchase a house where the monthly payment is more than 25% of your take-home pay.
  16. Don’t think you need to attend a prestigious college to get a high-paying job.
  17. Don’t get caught up in the corporate rat-race.
  18. Don’t forget that a high potential return means high risk.
  19. Don’t manage your money without a written monthly budget.
  20. Don’t believe the hype about ‘good-debt’, it doesn’t exist.

This story is published in Educated & Broke — a publication dedicated to helping you fight student loan and consumer debt by providing real-life, practical advice.

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