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When It Comes To Money, Don’t Rely On Appearances

April 3, 2013

iceberg340I’ll never forget the day I learned that a nice, young family in our neighbourhood had declared bankruptcy.

How could that be?  I know this happens to people, but no, not them?! I had always envied this family. Our kids played together and we had enjoyed drinks on our backyard decks. After all, both the Mom and Dad drove shiny, new BMW’s (my “dream” car at the time).  I had wondered what they knew that I didn’t.  At relatively young ages, how could they afford these beautiful new cars when my husband and I were barely making ends meet? I just assumed that they were smarter, more successful and richer than us.

I remember, over a fairly short period of time, that their cars were gone, the house was sold and they moved out of our neighbourhood.  Apparently, both were self employed and at least one of their businesses declared bankruptcy.  We never heard from them again nor do we know anyone who did.  I have often wondered how they’re doing.  Are the kids, now young adults, happy and starting their own careers?  I really hope this family got the help they needed to dig themselves out of their financial mess.

I don’t want this to be you!  There are many places to turn to for help before your finances become unmanageable.  You just need to recognize it and take action. Credit counselling services, non-profit organizations or other financial institutions can all help.  Or better yet, take the right steps TODAY to manage your money before it gets out of control.

So, next time you compare yourselves to your seemingly richer acquaintances, take a step back and be thankful.  You never know how much of the iceberg is still hidden under the sea.

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