Chicago Shoppers Should Weigh Pros and Cons of Spending With Cash and Credit

With millions of Americans recovering from personal debts and the recent credit crunch, it's no surprise that paying with credit cards has fallen out of favor.

But is paper money really superior to plastic, or vice versa? In short, it depends on the person, say Chicago bankruptcy attorneys.

Finances are highly personal. While one shopper might need to physically part with their money in order to take a purchase seriously, another might find cash all too easy to spend because it doesn't come with an automatic money trail to hold them accountable.

Credit has a lot going for it. It's fast, convenient and, unlike cash, you don't have to worry about it being stolen straight out of your wallet (though obviously you'll need to notify your credit card company if your card is stolen). Problem is, it can be too convenient. Maybe you had some surprise expenses this month that ate through your paycheck, but you still want that new pair of shoes. It's hard to say no when it all takes is a swipe of the card. And unlike cash, credit cards come with interest and fees, all of which vary depending on your particular account and credit score.

Cash is the old standby. Many people find it's harder to part with - watching it leave your hands is a reminder that you really are giving something up in exchange for the item or service you're receiving, and this is a chance to make sure you really want to make that purchase. For some folks, cash is the best way to budget. They put a certain amount in their wallet after payday, and that's all they allow themselves - once it's gone, it's gone. Or is it? For others, having cash in their wallet means it will get spent, whether it's on necessities or impulse buys. And when they're out, they just go back to the ATM. Unlike a credit card statement, there's not always an organized record of your spending habits to hold you accountable when you pay with paper.

It's up to you to determine the method that best suits your needs. And if you're struggling to stop overspending, you know that your current choice isn't working - try switching to something else. If nothing you do seems to make a difference in your debt, maybe it's time to call in the professionals. At DebtStoppers, our professional Chicago bankruptcy attorneys can determine if bankruptcy can lower or discharge your debts. Find out for free if bankruptcy is right for you with a complimentary personal debt analysis. We can't control how you spend your money, but by helping you free up more of your paycheck by eliminating debt, we can help you find more of it to spend.

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