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Debt can be easy to obtain, even if you have a steady income. Being in debt can be life-altering and emotionally draining but a solid plan can help alleviate stress and get you on the right path.
Try these useful tips to help yourself get out of, and stay out of, debt:
Create a budget that includes paying your debt systematically and realistically, along with a plan to save extra money, no matter the amount.
Avoid impulse purchases. This will reduce your overall, unwanted spending. It’s often too easy to blur the lines between your needs and your wants. When you are shopping for things that you actually do need, be sure to do some comparison shopping to help save when possible.
Stop using your credit cards but do continue to pay on them what you owe.
Depending on the size of your debt, it might be a good time to get a little creative. Find a second source of income such as a part-time job, selling items you no longer use or need, taking online paid surveys, offering pet-sitting services, or delivering food.
Create a payoff schedule that you can stick to. This should go hand-in-hand with your budget. Two great methods for you to choose from and follow are the Snowball Method and the Avalanche Method. See which works best for you and incorporate that into your budget.
Again, depending on the size of your debt, you may want to consider debt consolidation options to reduce interest rate charges and monthly payments.
Fight the urge to spend your tax refunds or work bonuses on new items. They provide the perfect opportunity to help pay towards debt.
Scrutinize your decisions on “update purchases” like a new phone or the latest version of a vehicle you already have. Are they really necessary at this moment?
Evaluate your subscriptions you pay for each month such as movies, music, and other entertainment services. You may not be using them as much as you think and could trim some subscriptions from your monthly expenditures, helping you save.
If you pay for gym or yoga memberships but only use them during certain seasons of the year, consider paying month-to-month during those times instead of a full year cost.
During times of paying off debt, avoid dining out and purchasing items like coffee every day. If these are habits, take a look at your previous month’s bank statement and add them up. You may be shocked at how high the number is but it is a great realization to face. You will now know that those funds could be better used elsewhere, such as debt payments.
Once you have finally made your last payment and are debt-free, keep your budget plan of saving going. The last thing you want to do is to go make a big purchase as a reward for yourself, such as a new vehicle. You don’t want to take on new debt as soon as you’ve just paid it off.
For additional help in tackling your debt, you can give us a call at 315-735-8571 or make an appointment with one of our friendly Member Service Representatives today. Our knowledgeable staff is here to help you create a plan to restructure your debts and to help you pay them off faster.
If you would like to schedule our Community Educator for a seminar or workshop for any Financial Friday educational topic, please email your request to FinancialEducation@fsource.org
Interested in learning more? There are also additional resources which have been created specifically to help you best control and leverage your finances. Feel free to use these anytime!
We look forward to helping you.
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