I’m a self-employed something-or-other in New York City, working from my interesting apartment arrangement on the Upper Westside, where I live alone. I’m single and completely debt-free. My income varies, but I always seem to meet a certain minimum and live well within that. Everything over that is “gravy”, and I’m now focusing on making sure all that gravy isn’t wasted.
A few other tidbits about me that you might find interesting…
- I have an MA in applied linguistics from the University of Edinburgh, largely unused.
- I have been actively unmaterialistic since the age of 11 – no label whoredom here!
- My grand passion is travel, and since I prefer a little grit over luxury, I can afford some pretty fantastic experiences.
The Past: Experience with Debt
I’ve never had a problem with debt, except for the brief era in my early 20s when I was married to a Scotsman who defied the national stereotype and behaved like a financial dunce. My college loans were minimal – Perkins, $6200 @ 5%, $198/quarter for 10 years. I paid it off a few years early…would have been many years earlier if not for the dunce. I’ve had a credit card since I was 18 and have never carried a balance of more than $2000. I haven’t carried any balance at all since leaving the dunce.
However, I come from a family of Moneytards. My immediate family is reasonably bright but generous to a fault, and they have a habit of burying their heads in the sand when the money stuff gets too confusing. I bullied my parents into declaring bankruptcy in 2004, which upset the power balance in the family. I’m the first person they all go to for financial advice – and they usually follow through.