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Duggars and Debt-free


roddma

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I don't think anyone likes being in debt. But I'd rather be in debt (either with a mortgage or paying rent) than homeless.

I do not consider the Duggars to be debt-free. They are indebted to the show to maintain their lifestyle and popularity.

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I don't think anyone likes being in debt. But I'd rather be in debt (either with a mortgage or paying rent) than homeless.

I do not consider the Duggars to be debt-free. They are indebted to the show to maintain their lifestyle and popularity.

This. They are indebted to TLC and a lot of people behind the scenes and they are also indebted to cable and satellite subscribers who partially the reason their show is able to exist. I laugh once when I read an interview that Mullet did in which she said that the reason the family doesn't have cable is because it would be like having garbage delivered to your home. I laughed so hard when I read that because Mullet doesn't even realize that the Duggars' show exists partially because of people who have cable/satellite.

I think once the show ends, the Duggars will be ok financially. They probably won't take big trips anymore. Their popularity will decrease after the show ends. The books they have written aren't popular enough to maintain further printings and those titles will be out of print at some point within the next few years or so.

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I have plenty of issues with credit reporting agencies, but I don't agree that your FICO scores punishes you for being responsible with money. Through my credit union, I get a free FICO score update every month. Mine is 775 and I have never owed a single cent on credit cards. I use a card but pay off the balance each month and get the rewards (cash back, in this case). My mom does the exact same thing and her FICO score is over 800. My credit union is wonderful and even tells my why my score isn't higher, and in my case there are two reasons. First of all, I'm just too young have a really long credit history. The second is actually because I carry too much debt. Even though I pay it off every month, I get somewhat close to the credit limit. So that means you don't get rewarded for carrying large debt.

I've heard a few people complain that their credit was too good and it hurt them. This has never been the case with me. I suspect that those people had worse credit than they were willing to admit, even to themselves sometimes.

I have a lot of problems with credit reporting agencies, the biggest being that keeping things accurate is your responsibility, not theirs. But I just don't agree that they punish you for paying off your debt.

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I have plenty of issues with credit reporting agencies, but I don't agree that your FICO scores punishes you for being responsible with money. Through my credit union, I get a free FICO score update every month. Mine is 775 and I have never owed a single cent on credit cards. I use a card but pay off the balance each month and get the rewards (cash back, in this case). My mom does the exact same thing and her FICO score is over 800. My credit union is wonderful and even tells my why my score isn't higher, and in my case there are two reasons. First of all, I'm just too young have a really long credit history. The second is actually because I carry too much debt. Even though I pay it off every month, I get somewhat close to the credit limit. So that means you don't get rewarded for carrying large debt.

I've heard a few people complain that their credit was too good and it hurt them. This has never been the case with me. I suspect that those people had worse credit than they were willing to admit, even to themselves sometimes.

I have a lot of problems with credit reporting agencies, the biggest being that keeping things accurate is your responsibility, not theirs. But I just don't agree that they punish you for paying off your debt.

I agree. Even before I had a mortgage or student loans, I had a fairly high credit score for paying off my (fairly low balance) credit card every month. Other than a month where I had a major car disaster when I was 21, I have never carried a balance (and I paid that emergency off in two months). I think that paying my monthly bills for reasonable federal student loan debt (with a low interest rate) and a small mortgage is not being "irresponsible with money," and paying off those each month is why I have a high credit score.

I hate how credit scores can totally rule our lives and i think credit checks are performed way too often for menial things, but I don't think your credit score penalizes you for being responsible with money...

Edited because I know the difference between "responsible" and "irresponsible."

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The thing about "debt" that bothers me is the Duggars lump all types of debt into just plain ole' "debt". If you went to school and took out loans and you are working a job now to pay off student loan debt, that is nothing compared to gambling debt or debt from binge-buying on a credit card. Some debt is good. You should NEVER shun college to avoid debt. There are all types of student loans, scholarships, and even cheap community colleges where one can earn a higher education. The Duggars sound like they believe all college is bad because all college will put someone into debt. I have a Master's Degree and I owe FAR less than some of my friends owe on the SUVs they've bought... seems worth it.

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The one thing I've never understood in the debt-free lifestyle is why renting a home is okay while having a mortgage is bad. Um, you still have to pay that X amount if you want a roof over your head... (And this is in no way a judgement on people who prefer to rent. I know people who have zero desire to ever own a home, and that is their own business, and I know there are pros to having a landlord to take care of everything.)

Thank you. I've been thinking this for ages. (And yes, I know that there may be factors that making taking out a mortgage a bad idea for specific people in specific situation, particularly in today's economic environment, but...)

There is nothing that makes it morally better to pay $800/month rent to the landlord vs. $800/month mortgage payment to the bank. Bragging rights to say "I have no debt". That's all. Same amount of money going out each month to keep a roof over one's head.

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Thank you. I've been thinking this for ages. (And yes, I know that there may be factors that making taking out a mortgage a bad idea for specific people in specific situation, particularly in today's economic environment, but...)

There is nothing that makes it morally better to pay $800/month rent to the landlord vs. $800/month mortgage payment to the bank. Bragging rights to say "I have no debt". That's all. Same amount of money going out each month to keep a roof over one's head.

Frankly I'm older and really don't want the hassles of repairs, I've owned homes in the past but at this point in my life there are other things I want to do besides worry about whether the trees need a trim, a new roof, liability insurance and the whole ball of wax. In todays market, a home would be a burden to my heirs should I pass before the market rebounds.

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Frankly I'm older and really don't want the hassles of repairs, I've owned homes in the past but at this point in my life there are other things I want to do besides worry about whether the trees need a trim, a new roof, liability insurance and the whole ball of wax. In todays market, a home would be a burden to my heirs should I pass before the market rebounds.

So, renting is a smart decision for you. I wasn't arguing that; sometimes it IS wisest to rent. I just have a problem with some who act like they have "no debt" bragging rights by virtue of not having a mortgage.

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You may want to read my post on Debt Free Duggars http://hopewellmomschoolreborn.blogspot ... -debt.html

I really enjoyed that post, it was well-written and very informative!! You are clearly a smart, thoughtful lady who has offered me some really interesting insights!! And I love that your response to negative comments is "Aren't you glad to live in a country where you are free to tell me that? Thank you for stopping by and taking time to comment. "

High-five, awesome lady!

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Apple, in the culture of my family, kids lived home and perhaps married and brought their spouse back to the family home. They stayed there until they saved enough money to buy a house free and clear. I think a lot of this had to do with being the children of immigrants. In my family culture today the third generation is buying homes with healthy cash downs, due to their parents help. I was among the few of the first generation, who owned a number of homes with a mortgages, and even though I could afford the payments and was debt free except for the mortgage it was a practice that was frowned upon. I'm getting pressured again to buy, and I'm resisting :D I don't think your post was a critique. And I think I should have further exampled how my own family viewed home ownership.

I think for younger folks who have 20+ years left to work a home can be a good investment. My DD owns a small cottage that she purchased with her fathers and my assistance (we bought it, helped rehab it and she took out a mortgage to pay us back when she was 21). She doesn't want to live in it and prefers to live communally. She actually has her father on call for repairs, with a monthly retainer. Since this is a college town she can charge a rent that debt services her mortgage and includes enough to retain her father's services. I've considered buying it from her and living in it. But its got a loft bedroom and I just don't want to schlep upstairs.

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Apple, in the culture of my family, kids lived home and perhaps married and brought their spouse back to the family home. They stayed there until they saved enough money to buy a house free and clear. I think a lot of this had to do with being the children of immigrants. In my family culture today the third generation is buying homes with healthy cash downs, due to their parents help. I was among the few of the first generation, who owned a number of homes with a mortgages, and even though I could afford the payments and was debt free except for the mortgage it was a practice that was frowned upon. I'm getting pressured again to buy, and I'm resisting :D I don't think your post was a critique. And I think I should have further exampled how my own family viewed home ownership.

I think for younger folks who have 20+ years left to work a home can be a good investment. My DD owns a small cottage that she purchased with her fathers and my assistance (we bought it, helped rehab it and she took out a mortgage to pay us back when she was 21). She doesn't want to live in it and prefers to live communally. She actually has her father on call for repairs, with a monthly retainer. Since this is a college town she can charge a rent that debt services her mortgage and includes enough to retain her father's services. I've considered buying it from her and living in it. But its got a loft bedroom and I just don't want to schlep upstairs.

Nobody helped us with down payment. I don't know if we will ever own our home free and clear (no mortgage). This used to be a goal of mine, and it used to worry me a lot. Now I look at it more like a) we are not upside down - we have had it for a number of years, and b) we would spend even more for a rental in our area.

It's a 2 story, and if we sell this and move anywhere else, at our age, it's going to be a single level. The joys of aging. :(

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Me too!

I guess that is what pisses me off about the anti-debt people. Should I have just died instead of going to the hospital and racking up five figures in medical debt? Should my husband and I have quit school and work instead of buying a minivan on a very reasonable, low interest credit plan?

If people were giving me businesses and letting me live rent free in their homes, I would probably be debt-free also.

Depends on if you're talking about the people like me who think it's foolish to go into debt for frivolities while knowing that SOMETIMES it's necessary, or people like fundies who would let someone die before taking debt they weren't forced to take.

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It's when people get caught up in having the latest expensive electronic, huge flat screen tv, or luxury vehicle, while already saddled with too much debt, that they run into real problems.

It grates on me when going to buy some socks at Target, Old Navy, anywhere, "Would you like to open a [store name] card today and save 10%?" Um, no. I don't need debt to pay for socks. And every other commercial tries luring people into debt with "low low rates!" for gadgets and gizmos they DO NOT NEED.

Schools need to spend time teaching kids about this stuff. And there need to be laws protecting kids by banning unsolicited credit card offers being thrown at kids the day they turn 18 when they don't really have any clue about how the world works.

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Guest Anonymous

I'm just not buying this debt-free thing. I just don't see how a family with 19 kids is debt-free...that is before TLC came along. In fact, I'm willing to bet that's why they chose to let TLC create a show about...to get themselves out of debt.

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I'm just not buying this debt-free thing. I just don't see how a family with 19 kids is debt-free...that is before TLC came along. In fact, I'm willing to bet that's why they chose to let TLC create a show about...to get themselves out of debt.

They expected the kids to eat barely better than a ramen diet and to basically be those ultra-poverty kids. In their case, if they were to start getting credit cards, they'd max them out and be no better off, only with debt payments. They had more kids than they could reasonably support, and they really didn't support those kids. Those kids did without a lot because their parents couldn't afford them.

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We've been debt free for a long time except for a mortgage. I have taken student loans, but I didnt' need to, I got the ones with deferred interest so it makes sense to wait and pay them back when I'm done, especially with how the stock market has done lately. I don't believe in debt except for mortgages and possibly cars if need be. Then when the car is paid off, put the payment in an account to buy the next car. We did it that way and it worked. We buy the most economical car that works for our needs. So no DVD player, leather etc.

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I'm not sure about the assumption that Jim Bob inherited his dad's estate. His father was not part of the cult. There was even footage of him telling Jim Bob that Michelle shouldn't continue having babies.

I would think he divided the estate between his wife and his 2 kids. Now if Grandma decided to fork over her share to Jim Bob, that's her decision, but I think she's smarter than that.

Maybe my husband and I are unusual, but we have our wills set up so that whichever one of us goes first leaves everything to the other, and in the event that we go together, everything gets split up equally between the 3 children. They are all adults, so there's no guardian issue. Granted, we aren't super rich, but the kids won't inherit until we are both gone.

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Supporters boast about the Duggars are debt-free. If you really think, they are debt-free because they lived well-below the average American lifestyle. It is easy to be out of debt if you keep kids out of college and live in 900 sq ft houses. I am not knocking anyone for cutting corners every now and then or buying used. However, in their case,i would give them more credit for being debt-free if they lived the average Joe's life like sending their kids to college and buying new shoes. Thoughts?

We make more than the average salary, but we live with less expense than the average 3 person household. It makes it easy to be debt free. I mostly judge those whose income is at the level of our and still has massive debt.

We aren't truly debt free. We have a mortgage.

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