Has anyone read "How to Get Want You

Avatar for zaboz
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Has anyone read "How to Get Want You
Wed, 05-07-2003 - 8:36am
Want in Life with the Money You Already Have"?

I just got it in the mail and have started to read through it.

One of her main suggestions is that you should stop killing yourself to pay

off your debt. She says just pay the minimum and use your cash for your

own goals-travel, a house, whatever really matters to you. If you have any extra

it shouldn't go to the creditor, it should go to savings or for something

that will improve your quality of life. Your debt takes a back seat to the more

important things in life.

I really like the philosophy. We're down to two student loans and it's made

me rethink whether I should be trying so hard to get rid of them. It might

be nice to build up our savings, buy a refrigerator that we've been putting off for

two years or take a nice vacation first.

It's occurred to me that this philosophy is fine

for people who can comfortably pay all their bills. But if you're struggling

to pay the minimums, this advice probably doesn't really help.

Has anyone else read it or have any thoughts?

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2003
Wed, 05-07-2003 - 9:01am
I read it a month or so ago and agree with a lot that she says. I think her emphasis is that you should enjoy life now,and not wait until you pay off your debt. You should do both. I don't really agree with the "pay the minimum" only thing though. If you have a high interest rate, you'literally never pay off the balance. I agree more with Mary Hunt and her "freeze the minimum" plan. You pay the minimum that is due the day you start the plan until the balance is paid off, regardless of the declining payments required.

I totally agree that even if you are in debt you should have personal goals that you are working to achieve. I've set up subaccounts at ING to pay for the new bed that I desparately need and a real vacation. I haven't added much to them but they are there. I tried to be as specific as possible as she recommends. It does make the goal seem so real. I have so much debt, it's hard not to want to throw as much as possible at it. I've got to train myself to think that I deserve to enjoy the fruits of my labors also.


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-31-2003
Wed, 05-07-2003 - 9:05am
I agree to a point. While it's important to live prosperously so we don't go into deprivation mode, and then go hog-wild, I don't agree on just paying minimums. Minimum *plus* a whatever extra you can afford is better. Paying just minimums keeps us poor, and the credit card companies rich.

All my debt at this point is at 0% interest, for at least the rest of the year. So I'm paying minimums on that until I get my inheritance, then I'll pay most of it off. But I'm still going to keep 1/4 to buy a new computer, and 1/4 to go into a contingency fund, and 1/2 will be applied to debt.

Also, a new refrigerator is something I would consider an investment. And a newer model will save you money by using less electricity. Enjoy it!

Lee Ann


Avatar for cl_beckymk
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Registered: 03-19-2003
Wed, 05-07-2003 - 9:32am
I actually bought this book..so you know I must have thought it was worth it. I had checked it out of the library about 3 or 4 times and decided I liked it enough to go buy a copy!!!

I *really* like her philosphy and her illustrations. Made me have a lot of *aha* moments. For example, I like her analogy of the silverware drawer, how we divide that up to make things easier instead of having them all lumped together in the drawer. That made sense to me as she applied it to money too (i.e. having seperate accounts). To me, her way and Mary Hunt's are really similar in concept, just execution is different. Mary Hunt just calls her the Freedom Account.

I love the chart she has in there (although in this economy it doesn't go low enough for interest. LOL!!), although it can also be depressing looking at it.

I *personally* have a hard time with just paying the minimum concept but it DOES make sense in that having cash on hand and actually living instead of "waiting until my debt is gone" makes sense. If I waited until I paid off all my debt to do anything like vacations, etc... we would never go anywhere (and in reality that is what has happened more often than not). I kind of regret that as I remember growing up going on yearly vacations, no where fancy necessarily but going away for a week during the summer. I have fond memories of that and I would love to pass that on to the kids but so far we have only gone on 2 real family vacations since having my first who is 9 years old now. :(. My 6 year old I'm sure doesn't even remember ever going on a long vacation because he was only like a year & half when we went last time, etc.... I started saving my change several years ago when I first started reading the book to go to Disney, let's just say I haven't always followed her advice as we only have $200 saved and geez that must be since at least 4 years or so. LOL!!! (Had to raid it a couple times and haven't been diligent on putting my change away for that but life sometimes throws you curve balls).

I do agree if you can't meet your minimums then that is a problem but if I recall she actually addresses that in the book at one point (I think on the chapter on credit cards...basically saying you *do* need to get to paying minimums for it to work and also frankly, you *can't* charge to make it work...same concept of snowballing...Doesn't matter if you throw $100 extra toward the card, if you charge, you aren't ever going to pay if off while keeping a balance).

So, my LONG 2 cents worth and I *highly* recommend the book. I have read the others too but for me, this one seemed more down to earth and struck a cord with me. It won't with everyone and that's OK. I liked parts of the Jerry Mundis books but didn't affect me as it has others, etc... I have learned through reading a zillion & one books (or so it seems. LOL!!), you can have lots of different authors basically saying the same thing just in a different way and each one will click with different people.


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-28-2003
Wed, 05-07-2003 - 10:38am
This is the book that got me started on saving and debt reduction. I love it. I read it in August 02 and by following the advice I saved almost $4000 by December. My cards were at 0% so paying the minimum wasn't hurting me with the accumulating interest. I found out I could save and how important saving is to my future. I have deviated from maximum savings and minimum payments to the opposite. For now I feel secure about my savings ability and ability to reduce our debt.

I now know that being debt free is not the ultimate cure all. Even people without debts have bills to pay. If you own a home there is always maintenance. Cars only last so long and have to be replaced. There are always taxes and insurance bills to pay annually. So a savings plan is necessary throughout our life.

I hope we can all find a plan that works.


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 05-07-2003 - 1:23pm
I kind of live by this. Paying off my debt still holds a high priority, but I don't deprive myself. I make sure there's money left over to enjoy life rather than put every extra penny onto debt. I don't agree with paying minimums if you don't have to. I try to pay extra every month.



Avatar for phoenixmama
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Registered: 03-20-2003
Wed, 05-07-2003 - 2:54pm
Haven't read this book, and unfortunately this makes me NOT want to. I guess it depends on what your goals are and how much wiggle-room you have (or want to give yourself). When I finally started getting serious about getting out of debt pretty recently, I stopped to rethink this strategy. If I can squeeze more out of my budget to pay off debt, why shouldn't I put some of that "extra" into savings, especially considering I have no savings. Well, had, up until a few weeks ago.

But, I think paying the minimums is just crazy IF you could afford more than that. The less you pay monthly, the longer you'll be in debt and the more you'll pay in the long run. "Your debt takes a back seat to the more important things in life." Well, that's totally subjective, it depends on what is more important to YOU, NOT what someone else tells you is supposed to be more important.

I guess it comes down to finding the balance that works for YOU and being openminded and flexible to change your strategy as needed to fit your changing needs. If you think it's best to pour every last penny towards your debt, don't let anyone tell you that's wrong! What's best for you may not be best for someone else.

~Jen, in the process of rethinking my own strategy...

Avatar for mrslove2000
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 05-07-2003 - 6:59pm
I haven't read it, though it sounds interesting. Who is the author?



iVillage Member
Registered: 04-17-2003
Wed, 05-07-2003 - 9:35pm
I started with this book and it helped me develop a plan I could live with and feel hopeful. I especially liked her idea of a dream jar and saving all my change for that dream. It helped me get going and organize my thoughts and feelings from years of total chaotic chaos. I then switched over to Mary Hunt's Rapid Debt Reduction Planner because it offered a method that paid the debt down more quickly while still saving and having some spending money.

Just my two cents worth.


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2003
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 7:59pm
I've read the book about 3 times now. And at first I agreed that paying the minimum was crazy. But, it can make sense. The theory is that if you are only paying the minimums, you are freeing up other money which can go towards other things- such as 3 months savings, emergencies, etc. If you have $400 extra and send it all to the cc- what happens when your water heater dies and you don't have any emergency savings?- You end up using the cc again. However, if you had saved the money, you wouldn't be paying for the water heater plus the cc interest.

Another example she gives is dividing up extra money that comes into your life- if you receive a $500 tax refund- use some to pay cc, some for savings, some for whatever else.

I think that it makes a lot of sense to only pay the minimums while you build up your savings. Once you have a good foundation then sure, pay as much as you can to cc.

She has a lot of great suggestions- I personally highly recommend her book.