Check over your
utility bills and see if you can trim down your bill. You may have cell
phone service that could be changed over to a pre-paid cell phone that
could save you a bundle. You donít need to have a cell phone; however
having one for emergencies can be helpful. Check into your regular
phone line too. Shop around for the best long distance package. If you
have extra features like caller ID or call waiting, you may be able to
get a less expensive package.
If you can change
your electric consumption habits use slightly less each month, it could
add up to some savings. Even if you change your thermostat just a
couple of degrees it can add up to big savings. Closing your curtains
during the heat or in the cold can help insulate windows to further save
more money. Changing out light bulbs for fluorescent low-energy bulbs
can save money too.
Shop around for
automobile and home ownerís insurance to make sure you are still getting
a good rate. Even with the discounts for being a long time customer,
you could still be paying more than you need too. Donít over insure
your home, most home insurance policies will sometimes depreciate the
value of your home or will pay off your loan first whichever is cheaper.
Make sure to save
your money before buying something. Getting into the habit of saving
your money to buy something will help you break out of the credit card
IOUís habit. The more you get away from the IOUís the more you will
have a chance of getting debt free. Consider paying cash for
If you own a home
you might want to consider consolidating your credit card debt into a
second home-equity mortgage loan. This can help make your interest
rates lower; it can also lower your overall monthly minimum payments.
Check with your taxman to see if the interest that you paid on the 2nd
mortgage is deductible. You might actually get a break on your taxes
with the extra interest you paid with the debt consolidation with a home
equity loan. Personal credit card debt interest paid is not deductible
on your taxes.
Be willing to go
without sometimes. Know that little sacrifices will add up to saving
money. It can be the difference of making it and paying off the debt in
a timely manner. Also remind yourself that once the debt is gone you
will have more income available to you as you are not paying all that
money in interest each month. Become motivated about getting rid of the
debt, but also keep the motivation going.
Take notes and
continually figure your budget. The more that you can write down your
expenses the more you have an understanding where your money is going.
It will help you set up a concrete plan on how to pay off your debts.
You need to know where your money is being spent and how stop spending
money. Every family has different areas that could be improved on.
This could mean not eating out at restaurants, not buying new clothes,
or skipping the movie theater. We have grown accustomed to these
habits, which may need to be broken in order to succeed financially.
Once you see that
your financial situation is going on the right track you will happy with
the changes and sacrifices that you have made. Oprah named her show
ďThe Debt DietĒ for a reason; it isnít easy to get out of debt, just
light it isnít easy to lose weight. We know it is good for us but we
donít like it one bit, but once we accomplish our goals we reap all the