Welcome to my very first blog post! Today, I’m going to be speaking with you about the stress of finances and debt. I also plan to share a few tips that my Husband & I have recently put into action to improve our own personal finances. We began working on the improvement of our finances right at the beginning of 2018 and so far, everything we’ve been doing seems to be working for us! SLOWLY, but surely things are getting much better and I hope after you read my post, you’re able to find some sort of inspiration on how to improve your financial circumstances as well and relieve yourself from some of that stress. First and foremost, I just want to say that the decision to get yourself out of debt is life changer, if you are willing to make the necessary commitment that comes along with it. Getting out of debt involve more than just paying off a few credit cards. It means changing spending habits, learning how to budget, knowing who and how much you owe, prioritizing debts, creating emergency and retirement funds, and knowing where to find help when you get off track. In other words, there are a lot of decisions that need to be made and it’s possible! You’ll make some mistakes along the way and that’s okay but here are some you can avoid that it will make it easier for you to get out of debt and stay there.
- DON’T SPEND MONEY YOU DON’T HAVE!!
It’s never fun to live from paycheck-to-paycheck, not to mention how stressful it can be! It’s a tough situation to be in, not to mention a scary one too! I know a little something about this horrible habit of spending money you don’t have… When I was going through a tough situation with my finances, one of the things I resorted to was a “payday” loan. Those things are of the devil & let me tell you why.. basically with a payday loan, you’re spending your paycheck before you even get it. Me personally, I would borrow $425 and on my payday I would have to go and pay this company back exactly what I borrowed PLUS interest. (Most payday loan advances have very high interest rates.) Total, I ended up paying back a total of $497 but then I would have to turn around and reborrow the same amount because paying them back always took majority of my paycheck! Next thing you know, this became a never ending debt for me. I don’t know what your personal experience is with this habit but I advise you stay away from the payday loans. They can be very hard to get rid of if you don’t have a good extra amount of money rolling in to help pay them off. The lesson in this for me was to remember that debt is not a tool. The borrower is slave to the lender.
- DON’T TAKE OUT LOANS UNLESS YOU NEED THEM!!
Loans aren’t necessarily a bad thing. However, I don’t recommend getting them unless they are just absolutely needed & if you should happen to get one or two…. Just make sure you don’t get more than you can handle! I’ll give you another snippet of one of my personal experiences and this situation is actually still current. I’m not a big fan of putting my personal business out for everyone to know sometimes it’s just necessary when one of your biggest goals is to help the next person(s). Honestly, you can’t help other people with their situations if you’re never transparent about your own. So anyway, long story short… towards the end of last year 2017, My Husband & I ran into some terrible financial issues. Due to lack of a good support system & no one to turn to for help, we decided to take out a loan. Well one loan ended up turning into a total of 4 loans that we now have on our backs. To say the very least, it has been nothing short of a headache trying to pay on each one every single payday along with all of the other bills. Thankfully, income tax season is here & when we get our taxes back… those 4 loans are the first things that are going to get paid off and taken care of! In most cases, these loans are easy to get but also hard to get rid of as well! So save yourself some stress and stay away from loans unless you really need them and like I said before, if you have to get one just make sure you don’t get more than you can handle.
- THE ONLY WAY TO BEAT THIS STRUGGLE IS TO STAY AHEAD OF IT!
Pay ahead on bills when you can! Getting in the habit of doing this can be hard at first but the more you do it, the more you’ll appreciate it when the next bill with the same expense rolls around cheaper the usual. Whether it be your car note, rent, house payment, utility bill, childcare expense or cable/phone … get in the habit of paying a little extra towards it. You could even toss an amount as small as $10-$20 extra towards your bill and you’ll still benefit from it! Either way, to pay ahead will always be a win/win situation. It relieves some stress when it comes to bills and in most cases, you’ll always have a little extra spending money to play with.
- SAVE! SAVE! SAVE!!!
Set a goal to sit back a solid amount of money from each paycheck. Whether it’s $10, $50, or $100 … that money will most certainly add up! A lot of people call this, “Saving for a rainy day”. Your rainy day fund can help you avoid going into debt or using credit cards excessively to pay for unplanned, short expenses. Your emergency fund also offers those benefits and two additional perks: Peace of Mind & PERSONAL FREEDOM!!
- KNOW THE IMPORTANCE OF BUDGETING!
Last but not least, you need to learn and know the importance of a budget! Since budgeting allows you to create a spending plan for your money, it ensures that you will always have money for the things you need and the things that are important to you. Following a budget or spending plan will also keep you out of debt or help you work your way out of debt if you’re currently in it.
I hope & pray that some of this information was helpful to you all! As I said earlier in my post, these are just some of the things that My Husband & I have put into action and thankfully we’re seeing good results. It just takes time depending on how deep you are in debt. If nothing else helps, I would recommend getting in contact with a debt consolidating company. One of the ones that we’re considering is Lexington Law. Their number is 1-844-259-3482 if anyone is interested. If you know you already do business with them or have in the past .. feel free to comment below & share your experience with me! I’m interested! Also, if you would like to share any other tips for beating the financial struggle… please comment and let me in on some of them! We can all help each other 🙂