DAVE & DUJANOVIC

Could you cut up your credit cards and go cash-only?

May 16, 2019, 3:44 PM
Could you go cash-only?...
Could you go cash-only? Dave Noriega outlines the system his mother used to keep from getting into debt. (Image: Pixabay)
(Image: Pixabay)

It’s easy to overspend when all of your money is on a card. You just pick out everything you feel like eating at the grocery store, roll it up to the clerk, and don’t even bother noticing the price they list off when they ask for your money. Instead, you just hand them the card and move on – no matter how much it costs.

Maybe that’s why the average Utahn has so much credit card that, according to the American Bankruptcy Institute, it’ll take the average person in this state 17 years to pay it off.

But what if we fixed a new problem by doing the old-fashioned way? What if we cut up our credit cards and went cash-only?

KSL Newsradio’s Dave Noreiga explained how his mother used cash to keep her budget in line — and how he learned the hard way that he should have followed her example.

How to live cash-only

Cash-only envelope system

(Image: Pixabay)

Every month, when the Noriega family’s paycheck came in, Dave says that his mother would take all the money they had to spend, put it into envelopes, and stashed in her sock drawer.

That money, he says, was it. It was never replenished and his mother never broke out the credit cards. They just spent the money in that envelope and, when it ran out, stopped spending money.

“If there was some money there, we could have some fun,” Dave says. “But once that envelope was empty, it was gone.”

Some money would be stashed into an envelope for food and some in an envelope for everything else, but everything had a specific, set budget. If they budgeted $500 a month for groceries, they had to stay on that budget. As long as they stayed strict to the system, they didn’t have any choice.

“You learn to budget in each area,” Dave says. “It wasn’t just: ‘Hey, I’m really, really good about not buying new clothes, but I’m terrible about buying food.’ It was: ‘I have to be good in every area.'”

Dave says it worked. “It kept her out of debt, it kept her out of credit card use.”

Cutting up credit cards

Credit cards

(Image: Pixabay)

Dave Noriega follows in his mother’s footsteps — or, at least, he does now. That wasn’t the case, though, until about three weeks ago, when his wife didn’t give him any choice.

“I got a post-it note from my wife,” he says. “There was a post-it on the side of my bed and it said: ‘These are your credit card charges.’ I had racked up $350 in credit charges that she wasn’t prepared for.”

Despite his mother’s good example, Dave says that he made all the mistakes she avoided. He signed up for every credit card that offered a small in-store discount and pretty quickly lost track of how much money he was spending.

“I’ve been through some dark times,” Dave says. “I get sucked into it. It has been toxic to my life.”

Finally, his wife put her foot down. She left him that post-it note on a stack of twenties, letting him know that, from now on, he was going to be doing his shopping his mother’s way: with a set budget in cash that just can’t exceed.

“An allowance,” Dave says. “I flat-out get an allowance.”

More to the story

Whether you call it an allowance or a budget, it works. Read about how Dave Noriega now uses his mother’s system to feed a family of five for just $400 a month.

And listen to Dave Noriega tell the story himself on the Payday Monday podcast.

Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon on KSL Newsradio. Users can find the show on the KSL Newsradio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play.

affordable care act

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Today’s Top Stories

Dave & Dujanovic

Spanish Fork High School in Spanish Fork is pictured on Friday March 12, 2021. Students at Spanish ...
Mark Jones

Concurrent enrollment provides students with options in Nebo School District

Programs such as concurrent enrollment can give high school students and their parents options.
3 days ago
artificial intelligence banjo...
Curt Gresseth

ChatGPT: Plagiarism super-tool for students or AI brainstorming generator?

Will the future of AI be the interactive chatbot ChatGPT helping cheaters ace exams and tests or a new tool to assist all students in learning?
3 days ago
FrontRunner...
Elizabeth Weiler

UTA board looks at FrontRunner expansion in Utah County

Utah County is the fastest growing county in the state so UTA is considering a number of expansions to their current FrontRunner and bus lines. 
3 days ago
PayPal...
Curt Gresseth

Banks to launch app to compete with Apple Pay and Venmo

Banks are launching a new app for online money transfers that customers can trust to protect their finances.
4 days ago
hov lane is pictured, new law would let pregnant people use hov lane alone...
Samantha Herrera

Proposed law would allow pregnant people to use HOV lane

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Stephanie Gricius, R-Salt Lake City, would allow a pregnant person to use HOV lanes on their own.
5 days ago
mass shooter...
Curt Gresseth

Mass shooter’s age – 72 – makes California massacre harder to unravel

A mass shooter, 72, killed 11 people and injured nine in California on Saturday night before killing himself. A former US Attorney for the District of Utah dissects the massacre.
6 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Banner with Cervical Cancer Awareness Realistic Ribbon...
Intermountain Health

Five Common Causes of Cervical Cancer – and What You Can Do to Lower Your Risk

January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness month and cancer experts at Intermountain Health are working to educate women about cervical cancer, the tests that can warn women about potential cancer, and the importance of vaccination.
Kid holding a cisco fish at winterfest...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get Ready for Fun at the 2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The Bear Lake Monster Winterfest is an annual weekend event jam-packed full of fun activities the whole family can enjoy. This year the event will be held from January 27-29 at the Utah Bear Lake State Park Marina and Sunrise Resort and Event Center in Garden City, Utah. 
happy friends with sparklers at christmas dinner...
Macey's

15 Easy Christmas Dinner Ideas

We’ve scoured the web for you and narrowed down a few of our favorite Christmas dinner ideas to make your planning easy. Choose from the dishes we’ve highlighted to plan your meal or start brainstorming your own meal plan a couple of weeks before to make sure you have time to shop and prepare.
Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...
Macey's

5 Game Day Snacks for the Whole Family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...
Sorenson

The Best Tools for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Workplace Success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...
Macey's

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
Could you cut up your credit cards and go cash-only?