Thursday, September 17, 2009

Not So Smart Spending

After reading this article about posh dorms in the Chicago Tribune today I felt disturbed for a variety of reasons; however, the most annoying was this quote:

"You are going to be in debt anyways, might as well enjoy," said sophomore Ashley Hendzell of Tinley Park.

What?? Has she not noticed the financial crisis that so many people are currently facing? If she could talk to 10 of those families do you think they'd say "sure, go ahead! You'll be in debt after college anyways so why not throw a couple $5,000, $10,000 or more on those loans!" I'm sure more than one of them would grimly look at her and say "yeah, that's what I thought and look where I am now". I guess the mention of her 30 pairs of shoes kind of indicates she isn't the most fiscally minded student anyways.

I had a friend that went to a private school for both undergrad and graduate school. During those years she justified taking a nice vacation (Aruba and Hawaii are two that come to mind) by saying she "deserved" them; she was under a lot of stress, you know. And the money was, somehow, readily available via her student loans. Post graduation, after she married and tried to get a mortage her $120K in student loan debt made her enough of a liability that they left her off the mortgage altogether.

If you can pay for these posh dorms outright, than more power to you. If you need to roll the extra cost into your student loans then just say "NO". Isn't living in a cramped dorm room using milk crates as end tables kind of a college right of passage anyways?

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