Anyone who’s ever had too little money to cover what life throws at you, knows one thing: it’s expensive AF to be broke. There are countless ways in which those who have less end up paying more: buying in small quantities rather than in discounted bulk; ignoring car servicing because you can’t afford it, only to suffer a breakdown (towing + repair = $$$); not having a bank account because of bad credit, or lacking the minimum balance, and then giving up some of your paycheck every time you cash it.
These small and large burdens cause stress and often take more time than utilizing services built for the financially secure. The heavy toll of broke-ness isn’t limited to the financial: it is physical, emotional, and psychological.
This week, Broke in Philly—a collaborative of 20 local media partners, including The Citizen—launched a new series: The #HighCost of Being Broke. In this first installment, partner sites reported on eight areas in which this phenomenon plays out, including banking, transportation, cell phone access, food staples and more. Many of these stories also highlight solutions—policies or programs or options that help alleviate some of the cost born by those who can least afford to take them on.
Throughout 2018 and into next year, Broke will keep this series going, and will delve further into the solutions side a little later on. For now, we’d love ideas from you about what to report on next. What are the costs that disproportionately affect those with less that we cover? What’s a surprising everyday expense that you’re hit by? When you send us your feedback, tell us your neighborhood too, because we’d like to start mapping what costs feel like a burden in which neighborhoods.
You can text Broke at (215) 774-3212, hit us up on twitter @BrokeinPhilly (use: #HighCost) or fill in this form.
Check out the links from some of the partner sites below.
The high cost of being broke: Diapers
The high cost of being broke: Transportation
The high cost of being broke: Smartphones.
How to find low-cost bank accounts in Philly
The High Cost of Being Broke: Fighting ‘Quiet Hunger’ in Every Philadelphia Zip Code
Financial Empowerment Centers Help City Residents Improve Their Fiscal HealthHeader photo: Steve Teare