Paying Too Much for Things is the Most Common Form of Overspending Says the Nonprofit ICFE
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"Paying Too Much for Things is the Most Common Form of Overspending Says the Nonprofit ICFE"

RELEASE: January 2003
CONTACT: Paul S. Richard, ICFE Executive Director

San Diego, CA.  'People have two things to spend; time and money, and they would much rather spend their money. So much so, they routinely engage in the most common form of overspending; paying too much for things. How does this happen, you might wonder? Those people pay to much for things because they failed to comparison shop,' concluded the nonprofit Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE), a San Diego based group helping consumers become better spenders, regular savers and wise users of credit. The other type of overspender is someone who spends beyond, sometimes way beyond, their income and or ability to repay.

'If you are hearing 'spend, spend, spend' when your money talks, you too may be one of those consumers who later discover they have nothing to show for all of their hard years of working, or worse, find themselves in a nightmare of debt instead of living the American dream,' says ICFE executive director, Paul S. Richard, a registered financial consultant (RFC), who was in bankruptcy at court at age 25, due to overspending with charge cards.

To help determine what type of overspender you might be, here is a short evaluation to help. The following statements are about spending techniques. There are five responses to select from which indicate the degree of your likeness to each statement. Just mark the number in the space provided. Should a statement not apply to your situation, skip it and adjust the scoring accordingly which follows afterwards.

1. Totally like me
2. A lot like me
3. Equally like and unlike me
4. A little like me
5. Not like me at all

1. ____ I always live within my income range.
2. ____ Each income period, I set aside at least ten percent for savings and investments
3. ____ My finances are managed according to a written spending-plan .
4. ____ All household and grocery spending is planned in advance and done with a list.
5. ____ I rarely make more than one trip a-week to the grocery store.
6. ____ Grocery and other coupons and rebate offers are utilized whenever possible.
7. ____ Comparison shopping is something I/we do for practically every purchase, large or small.
8. ____ I have no revolving debt carried on credit or charge cards.
9. ____ I have not had an overdraft of my checking account nor paid late fees on a credit card.
10.____I regularly contribute to an employer sponsored retirement plan, IRA or a my own 401k plan.

Scoring Your Spending Techniques

10-15 VERY GOOD. Time to share your good habits and teach family members how you do it.
16-20 Pretty Good. Concentrate on improving a few areas for even greater savings.
21-35 Average. Devoting an hour to improving spending could save you an additional 10-15 percent.
36-40 Lousy. Immediate changes required, now, to avoid more overspending and a financial disaster.
41-50 It Stinks! Time to contact a credit and debt counselor.

For information about Mending Spending and help with how to set up and implement a spending-plan, visit: To receive the same information by mail, please send $1 and a self-addressed, 60 cent stamped envelope to:

ICFE Money Helps
PO Box 34070
San Diego, CA 92163-4070

About the ICFE:

The Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE) was founded in 1982 by the late Loren Dunton (creator of the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation and founder of the College for Financial Planning in Denver, CO.) The ICFE is dedicated to helping consumers of all ages to improve their spending practices, increase savings and use credit more wisely.

The ICFE is an award winning, nonprofit, consumer education organization that has helped millions of people through its financial continuing education courses programs and resources. In addition to eight Certification courses covering identity theft, credit files, credit repair and credit scoring, among others, it also publishes the Do-It-Yourself Credit File correction Guide, which is updated annually. The ICFE has distributed over one million Credit/Debit Card Warning Labels and Credit/Debit Card Sleeves world wide.

The ICFE is a partner with the national Jump$tart Coalition for Financial Literacy and the California Jump$tart chapter. The ICFE staff is also active with San Diego Saves and Military Saves, both offshoots of America Saves.

The ICFE is also an on-line help for consumers who spend too much. ICFE's spending help was featured in PARADE Magazine in the Intelligence Report section. The money helps and tips are from the ICFE's Money Instruction Book, our course in personal finance.

The ICFE helps consumers and students with mending spending, learning about the proper use of credit, budget and expense guidelines, how to set up and implement a spending-plan and also how to access financial education courses and how to teach children about money. Other ICFE services include: Ask Mr. G library, a free eNews service, and an online resource center for students, parents and educators, plus financial education learning tools in the ICFE Book Store.

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