When you drown in debt, it sometimes feels like the whole world is crashing down around you. Your mind is spinning and just can’t stop. You’re not sleeping well, and you’re worried whether your next check will be enough for your mortgage. And the worst questions swirl through your mind: how can I make ends meet this month?
If you have an inkling that you could be headed to a financial crisis, you’re far from being the only one. Many people feel exactly the same way. It’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel when you’re drowning in debt. So, what do you do when you feel like you have no hope of turning things around, when you realize that bankruptcy is the only option out of all of them?
There are some very unique ways to turn things around in your life – and save your credit card and credit rating from ruin. The solution? Debt snowballing. This might not sound like the best idea, but it can actually be the answer to your problems. Here are some ways to help people out of debt faster than ever before.
First of all, get rid of your credit cards. You don’t need to keep them because you want to buy something new. Keep them just in case you might feel the need to use them in the future. But don’t keep them because you might feel tempted to use them. Once you are debt-free, you can think about getting new credit cards, or even applying for a new home loan.
Another way to start working on your debt problem is to create a monthly budget. Write down your income and expenses on a sheet, and label it with your spending habit. For example, if you spend more than you earn, that’s a red flag. Cutting back on unnecessary spending and putting money towards paying off your debt may seem like a hard thing to do at first, but when you can have that $1000 fancy vacation you’ve been dreaming of, you’ll feel much better about tackling your debt situation.
Next, figure out what your biggest debts are. If you make monthly payments to credit card companies, then your biggest debt is your credit card interest rate. So, try to pay as low a rate as possible, even if it means reducing the amount you receive each month. Also, think about your smallest debts; these may not be paid off as quickly as your larger ones, but it’s still a good idea to reduce them as much as possible.
A third step toward your goal of financial freedom is to contact your creditors directly. Explain to your creditors that you are having trouble making your payments, and if they don’t work with you, they’re legally obligated to do so. Ask for lower payments or interest rates. You may also want to negotiate a settlement amount that’s agreeable to both you and your creditors.
Finally, start saving money. You don’t have to cut back all you can afford, just cut back on the things that aren’t necessary. Take your car out of the garage, sell those old items you haven’t used in a while, or give away the ones you really don’t need, like your kid’s toys. Your goal should be to get yourself out of debt as quickly as possible. Once you get your debt under control, you can afford to invest in a nicer home or more luxurious travel.
Comparison-shopping can also help you get out of debt. Rather than going directly to your bank or credit card companies, use your social media outlets (such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and MySpace) to look at similar products at different stores. See which companies give you the most in terms of perks, rewards, and service. See what kind of deals you can find when you apply at those stores as well.
The final step to getting out of debt is taking action. Even if your circumstances seem hopeless, don’t lose hope. You can get your finances under control when you are willing to put in some effort. Make your payments on time and avoid going over your head with debt. Once you feel like you’re drowning in debt, it will be easier to get out.
If you want to eliminate your debt and live a life that feels more like your own, you need to start designing your budget and taking action. When you have an immediate goal, this makes it easier to stay on track. You won’t feel overwhelmed when you reread your budget. It will be easier to keep track of your spending as well. Instead of drowning in debt, you will have just taken control of your financial future and it’s up to you to keep it going!