As I was traveling a couple weeks ago, I picked up the March 29th edition of USA TODAY. In the Money section Peter Dunn had written an article specifically addressing adult children still living with their parents. But what really caught my attention was the following paragraphs on student loans:
I’ve come to the conclusion that asking 18-year-olds to commit to tens of thousands of dollars of debt, without a job, income or assets, is among the stupidest thing modern society does. When you have no concept of money, what’s the difference between borrowing $20,000 or $50,000? You certainly know there’s a difference now, but you didn’t when you were 18.
Student loans can convince you that money doesn’t matter. Debts tend to do that. You get the benefit of the purchase without having paid for it. Obviously, this idea isn’t limited to student loans.
His line “You get the benefit of the purchase” popped into my mind when I read this article today:
The opening line of that article reiterates a similar idea – “out of sight, out of mind”. One of the most important things financial counselors like myself can do is bring people into an awareness of their current situation.