Most of us have that person in our lives that is habitually broke and needs money. This person is dear to you and you love them and you don't want to see them struggle. You give money, so much money you're starting to go broke. You've tried to help this person manage their money but to no avail. So what do you do when you still want to help but not be taken advantage of? Here's the solution I've been using the past year with someone who is very dear to me but let's cash burn a hole in their pocket.
Give gift cards.
The person in my life that needs money is bankrupt and now has no income. They thankfully have a place to stay but they need other basic items. In the last 5 years my husband and I gave this person over $3,000 cash, only to see them spend money on things they didn't need and neglecting to pay for/buy the things they did.
Needless to say this left us feeling used so we stopped giving all together. Now that this person truly has hit rock bottom it breaks our hearts. So we decided around Christmas time last year that we would send this person gift cards instead of cash every month. We will send either gas cards, grocery store cards, or cards to stores to buy clothes or gifts for their grandchildren.
So far this has worked great for us. We get to help this person we care about but don't have to feel taken advantage of since we are controlling how the money can be spent.
In order for us to not go broke buying these gift cards, I use coupons to buy them when available (I do this through Kroger and upload the coupons on my Plus card) and I use my Swagbucks to pay for the cards. This helps to keep our budget in check and to keep us from going broke paying for the gift cards.
What are some of the ways you've been able to still give without breaking your budget?