Often, we ask the question of “who” is going to give. More and more I’m hearing couples and families talk about what is going to give? As the pandemic has changed things for the past couple of years for everyone, so have the conversations.
Topics include selling property or homes because of the significant increase in value. I have one friend who is preparing her home and property to sell so that she and her family can live a totally debt-free life. What gives in their case? Some extra land. I had a conversation with another client who was selling property in Idaho. They had purchased property in 2020 for $95,000 and now were selling it for $250,000. What gives in that case? Their dream. The couple had a dream of building their own home on that property someday.
How many people are looking for a used car for their son or daughter who is now starting to drive? My husband and I both drive SUVs manufactured in 2007. They look beautiful and get us where we need to go. We’ve been considering buying a pick-up. I wouldn’t dare think about selling the SUVs right now though. We’re not prepared to jump into a used pick-up for $30,000! So, what gives? For now, the flexibility that a pickup would allow our family.
Raise your hand if you or someone you know bought an RV during the pandemic? How many of you are using them for 2nd offices for your work from home job? How many of you will sell the RV as soon as restrictions around the pandemic are lifted or it becomes more comfortable to travel? I don’t know about you but many of my clients are outdoorsy people and enjoy spending time in nature. Suddenly, these places have become saturated with people looking for things to do outside their home, which totally makes sense. Getting an RV and then taking it some place to camp, explore or adventure is a great way to spend time outdoors. If you took out a loan to finance your RV though, things could get messy if you go to sell it too soon. So, what gives? The potential for negative equity in your RV.
Some of my clients have used the stimulus money to get ahead. They’re saving it or paying off debt. They are tired of being stuck with where they are financially. So, what gives? The idea of having everything they want exactly when they want it.
I can’t tell you how many conversations I’ve had with people about student loan forgiveness. Some may feel that this is old-school thinking, but if you incurred the debt and you received the education, why would you expect the loan to be forgiven? The debt is still owed. I encourage my clients to pay off student loan debt. It doesn’t need to be that nagging thing that hangs over their head for decades. Acknowledge that the debt is owed and start making payments to take care of it. It is the borrower’s responsibility. If you are a parent and have taken out Parent Plus loans for your student, help them understand the weight and responsibility of that decision. Make sure that they have a duty to pay for some, if not most of the loan. What gives? Pride.
Recently I received my annual property tax bill in the mail. I knew it would be time to make a payment soon, but I had the end of May in mind in terms of a due date. I recall that because of the economic impact of the pandemic, the County Treasurer, extended the due date by one month. Receiving this bill this month caught me off guard. What gives? Savings for vacation.
All of these conversations have two things in common.
1. Not everything can be a priority and not everything can be done all at the same time.
2. There are trade-offs to every decision made around these important financial decisions.
What are you willing to research, experience, or delay to change what gives in your life?