Thank you for the support everyone! I've calmed down some, now. He has picked up a second job, but I'm waiting to see if he's truly serious about getting back on track. I haven't seen him enough to talk to him. We'll see. I really hope he gets it together. I'd hate to see him struggle for years because he made dumb mistakes about credit and money for several months. I gave him too much freedom too soon. That, and he's been coddled. I didn't do him any favors.
loyalsudz: Thank you for the links!
Just came across your thread. How are things with your son?
Most young folks do not really know about the ramifications of having bad credit? All depending on what your son does, some employers even check an applicant's credit report as a part of their background checks.
Either way though, I hope your son has found the error of his ways.
I am one of the infamous young people who is new (enough) to credit. Take it for what its worth, but in my opinion us kids will just end up making whatever decision(s) we want to. My parents never encouraged me to get a credit card, and I'm sure they were skeptical and worried on my 18th birthday when I did it anyways and came home from the banks with 3 new card. I think he will learn from his own mistakes and it seems like you've instilled enough wisdom about the world of finance that he will eventually find his way.
OP I am so sorry about that! I hope that he matures and is able to see the value of a $1 and also good credit. In 2015, while I was in graduate school, my very controlling father [of whose name was on my car note] up and decided he was going to have my car shipped to NY, where he lives. He did not tell me...and left me carless. I am still not sure why...I had a 4.0 in my program, I worked full-tim and part-time to live on my own and try to reduce my student loan costs. I am not sure what he expected me to do...probably beg for it back? Alas, I put my big girls pants on and bought a car....WITH A 17% interest rate due to my lack of credit. I was in no way shape or form ready for a car payment and quickly fell behind. Then when my student loans came around it got even worse....I am just now in a position where my student loans are 100% current and my car payment is only 30 days behind...after 2 very close almost reposessions. Now, I see the light at the end of the tunnel and I can even attempt to look at my credit report and rebuilding it. I am not certain that I will ever forgive my dad for what he did to me. Him taking my car without warning sent me into financial distress from which I have not fully recovered.
I am truly sorry that he does not seem to appreciate the setup that you have provided him, but...I guess what I am trying to say do what you have to do, but I hope that he opens his eyes before he gets into a situation that takes years to dig out of.
1. Take the car, remove him from your insurance. Your cost will go down and he will have to figure his own way to get transportation considering you are paying for it (the car). As such time as he gets another car, he can search and pay for his own insurance. I did it when I was 19.
2. As long as you are not a co-applicant (co-signor) on his cards, let him get himself in trouble. Doing it now is better than him finding out later (trust me I am just now cleaning mine up at the tender age of 33).
All he needs is a roof over his head and food in his mouth. This is really all you should be providing not as an obligation but as a courtesy. I would go so far as to even charge him rent. Maybe start at $100 and increase $100 every 6 months or so to give him some motivation to be a little more responsible.
A little tough love goes a long way.