Slay The Debt Dragon

Being in debt is never fun, and it seems like the amount of debt you collect continues to grow and grow and grow at a rapid pace. Most people struggle to get out of debt, and they end up so far into it that they end up losing their cars, losing their credit cards, or even losing their homes.

Instead of allowing debt to overcome you and risk losing everything you have, you need to take the time to slay the debt dragon by implementing the following tips.

Create a true budget:

In order to get out of debt, you have to start budgeting yourself. In most cases, this is best done with a cash system. It’s very easy to overspend when you put everything on a credit card, but this is how you get into debt. When you pay for everything with cash, you can’t overspend.

Go through your finances and write down how much money you bring in a month and how much money you spend in a month. Break down your expenses into categories, such as groceries, utilities, dining out, entertainment, etc. Then, determine where you can afford to make cuts and create a budget. Instead of spending $600 every month on groceries, try to cut it back to $500. Every month, try to cut back your budget even more. When you create a budget and stick to it, you’ll be able to put excess money towards debt and a savings account.

Cut unnecessary expenses:

We all pay for something that we truly don’t need, so take some time to go through your finances and determine where you can make cuts. For example, if you rarely use your cell phone, it’s unnecessary for you to pay $100 per month on a cell phone bill when you could opt for a pay as you go plan. If you don’t watch TV very often, opt to cut out cable altogether and instead pay for Netflix or Hulu, which will give you everything that cable does but for a much cheaper price.

If there are things you can’t do without, try calling your provider and ask if there are ways to lower your bill. You may find that your cable company is running a promotion that you can jump on or that you can refinance your home or car for a lower monthly payment. This will all help you get out of debt.

Downsize:

Most people spend too much money on something they don’t need, which is why you should consider downsizing. For example, if you live alone in a four-bedroom house, it may be time to sell the home and move into a townhouse or condo. This will be much cheaper all around, and you’ll be able to climb out of debt quickly. If you have multiple cars, see if you can cut back to just one. It may not be as hard as you think, and being a one-car family can greatly reduce the amount of debt you have.

Sell your excess belongings:

We all collect junk, and selling it can help you earn some extra income to use towards paying off your debt. Spend a weekend going through your attic, closets, basements and other storage areas and make a pile of stuff you no longer want. Then, hold a garage/yard sale or sell your items online. Put all this extra money toward paying off your debt.

Add supplemental income:

Earning extra money to pay off your debts is a great way to live a debt-free life. Snag a part-time job at nights or on the weekends and put all that extra money towards paying off your debts. If that’s too difficult for you, try finding a second job you can do from home. Online transcription companies hire numerous freelancers to transcribe audio and text and you can generally set your own hours. This way, you can earn extra money while still tending to your personal life.