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Chelsea: Hi, I'm Chelsea

Lauren: And I'm Lauren

Chelsea: And we are...

Together: The Financial Diet!

Chelsea: So today we're going to be doing something which I think is a little fun and little embarrassing, but very important and and that's sharing our money mistakes so that we can share what we learned from them and that you might not make them yourself. So I'll kind of kick things off, uh in interest of fairness, so my biggest money mistake is one I've actually made a whole video about and that's when I ruined my credit! So basically ruining my credit was extremely easy, it happened in a few months when I was 18. Basically I got a $500 credit limit visa, maxed it out, threw it away, ignored the bills, ignored the late notices, the collections whatever, and by the time I actually paid it off I was 22, my credit was ruined, and I had to pay $1300 off an original $500 card and that wasn't even the full thing that I owed with all the interest and fees! They just agreed to cut it down to $1300 so I would pay it. So my mistake there was pretty simple and that was not paying my credit card bill and what I've learned is that it's essential and now I pay every month in full what I owe on my credit balance.

Lauren: And to piggyback off of what Chelsea just said one of my biggest financial mistakes is kind of learning that you should always pay off your credit card balance in full at the end of that month. So it took me a long time to learn this, but months would go by where I would keep a lingering balance of a few hundred dollars and get hit with interest charges. Even though I sometimes would have the money in my checking account there was a part of me that felt like I didn't want to see that balance get so low, so I would not pay off my credit card so I could keep more in my checking account.

Chelsea: So my next one kind of actually piggybacks off of that too because one of my worst habits, and it was a huge mistake, I was keeping money in my checking account because like Lauren I liked seeing that big impressive number. Even though it was a terrible idea because it was on my debit card, so I could just be out at a store and just swipe whenever I wanted and it made it so that in almost 2 years I really didn't save anything because I was never transferring that money because by the end of the month when it was time to, you know, pay everything there was nothing left to put into savings. So now what I do is every time I put that money directly, automatically into my savings account. You can set up an automatic transfer with your bank and that's what I do so that it's out of my hands and, you know, unable to be spent on my debit card. 

Lauren: So another one of the big money mistakes that I made was when I was 21 I took a trip to Majorca, Spain to meet up with a bunch of girlfriends on vacation at a time when I was shit broke and should not have been flying anywhere. Not only did I fly someplace when I was broke, I spent like $1600 on a flight and pretty much depleted my entire savings account. Like it was one of the worst things, money decisions I have ever made and I still look back on that and feel like a pang of remorse. It was a good trip, but it was just not the right time financially.

Chelsea: But that's what's dangerous, right? Because a lot of people will say, especially as we've discussed those terrible Pinterest things, like spend on experiences, not on things

Lauren: Exactly!

Chelsea: But sometimes you can't afford experiences either! 

Lauren: Yeah! It was exactly that. Like I was like "I'll never get this chance again to travel." Lol, I will get another chance to travel. I was 21 at the time and I thought that like this was just the smartest decision you could make because it was something that was going to enrich me. So what I basically learned from that is to just kind of plan and organize and save as far out as ahead of time as you can, so that you're not slapped with super expensive flights right at the last minute. I always focus now on traveling within my means and I would never put myself into debt for a vacation, no matter how much I felt like I needed a short trip. I can take a stay-cation if I needed it, so... 

Chelsea: Right, well... you're like "This is such a great life event that I'm going to have no savings anymore because I got to go to Spain." 

Lauren: "I can eat cat food, but dammit I saw Majorca, Spain."

Chelsea: So to kinda keep the conversation going we asked our readers to send us their sort of big money mistakes and embarrassments and what they've learned from it and we're going to share them with you! So the first one is from someone named Kat and she's 21 and she says "My biggest financial regret to date is spilling a large on tea all over my 1 year old MacBook Pro. It was my sophomore year of college and I was drinking out of a Starbucks cup that didn't have a top on it." Big mistake "And there went my $1,000 computer, completely fried. My dad told me that in the grand scheme of things there are $1,000 mistakes and $5,000 mistakes, like totaling a car, and that I needed to be an adult. Suck it up, pay the money and learn from it. So even though it was insanely stupid it was a good way of teaching me at 19 to take way better care of my stuff. Needless to say I now try to be a lot more conscious about liquids near my computer." Wow, that's brutal. 

Lauren: A hard learned lesson. So our next reader submitted financial mistake is from Jenna and she's 30 and she wrote. I totally avoided credit and debt pretty much from the time I was 18 through nearly 25 because I was so paranoid about them. My parent had lost their house from debt, so it wasn't until I was applying for my first apartment to rent on my own that I realized I had no credit history and therefore couldn't get a lease. I had to live with roommates for another 2 years until I built up enough credit to have a good score. What I learned, don't avoid having credit altogether. It can be just as damaging as having bad credit. You need to use credit wisely including the dreaded credit cards.

Chelsea: So true! Man, credit cards are scary, but you really need to use them. So our next reader mistake is from Noel and she is 26 and Noel writes "When I was first out of college and starting my big kid job, one of the first things I did was buy a nice car because I had been driving terrible beaters all my life and with my new salary I could finally afford a monthly payment for a really good one. I did not realize how much car depreciate the second you drive off the lot or how much a burden that car payment would be every month when I lost my job in a lay off. I ended up having to sell my car at an enormous loss, still had to pay off the balance of the first one, and ended up getting an old used Honda cash, which I've had for 2 years and which takes me to and from my new job just fine." As someone who has never had a nice car... I can't relate, but that sounds terrible. You've, you know...

Lauren: I've had a new car, but it is a... it is a burden to have to make those monthly payments, for sure. So our final reader submitted financial mistake is from Ashley and she's 28. Ashley writes "My biggest money mistake has to be buying shitty clothes and shoes for the first five years of my adulthood, then wondering why I ever had to replace things like boots and coats every season. I would get t shirts that would literally fall apart in the washer, like literally turning into strings because they were so crappy. I shopped a lot at a very bad place we won't name, let's call it always 22. Anyway I once did the math and I ended up spending $480 on work heels over the course of 5 years each pair breaking and giving me super big blisters. I have since invested in one $200 pair and they're comfortable, durable and all I have to do is get them re-soled once every 2 years. Money saved!" 

Chelsea: That is like my life also. I have, like, not done fast fashion for pretty much a year and I have to say my life is way better. Like everything, you do pay more upfront, but it lasts, it really lasts! Like I didn't even know that you could get shoes re-soled!

Lauren: Yeah, you can! Magic... it's magic

Chelsea: And you can! It costs, you know, like $20 or whatever and it's like you have brand new shoes! And you can do that a lot, it's crazy. It's like buying nice clothes is like a whole new world, but it really changes your life for the better.

Lauren: It's like an instant life hack to be walking around with clothes that don't have holes in them.

Chelsea: So those are some of our financial mistakes and although they were hard lessons to learn, they were definitely worth learning because we're not making them again. And whether it's, you know, not using credit cards properly or buying clothes that fall apart in the washing machine, your financial mistakes are not life sentences, we can all get better. And we want to hear what are some of your financial mistakes are and what you learned, so leave us a comment in the comment section and talk about your most embarrassing money stories.

Lauren: So as always, thanks for watching and don't forget to hit the subscribe button and go to thefinancialdiet.com for more. 

Together: Bye!