The financial upheaval of the last ten years has left many people unable to save and deeply in debt, and that can cause worry, stress and depression. Debt can affect every aspect of your life, following you everywhere, and making it harder to get credit for any purpose, from buying a car to renting an apartment.
But debt need not be permanent. There are many online resources that can help you get out of debt and by taking steps to control your debt problems, you will find that the burden of debt begins to lift. To help you get started, here are four useful early-stage debt-busting tips.
Acknowledge your debts
As with any problem in life, you can’t begin to resolve excessive debt until you acknowledge that it exists. It isn’t easy to accept that you have a debt problem, but it is the starting point. In fact, even by reading this article, you have taken an important step towards accepting the issue and finding the solution. Acknowledgement is the beginning of resolution.
List your income and expenses
The first practical step in tackling debt is to clarify the details. It can be a painful process, but it is crucial. Writing down in full exactly how much money you have coming in and going out, and how much debt you have, will help you to see clearly the extent of the problem and enable you to identify where your money is going. You may even find yourself surprised by your spending habits and be able to spot immediate improvements.
When drawing up your list of income and expenses, make sure that you leave nothing out, not even small expenses. This written account can be used as a financial statement which you can show to creditors when negotiating repayments.
Maximize your income
Are you making the most of your potential income? Make sure that you are claiming all of the available entitlements. There are programs in place to help people in difficulties, so don’t be hesitant about using them. If you have a job, you may be able to get overtime or earn a promotion, and you may even be able to take on a part-time second job, even if it is only for a short time, while you make progress on your debt.
Make changes to your expenditure
Take a long hard look at your expenses and see where they can be reduced. Even for those with a relatively small income, it is possible to make savings, perhaps by choosing a cheaper travel option, taking your own lunch into work, or cutting back on luxuries.
There are many more steps to tackling your debt problem, and at some point, it will be a good idea to seek the advice of debt organizations on how to pay down debt and in what order you should do so. But by following the advice above you will be able to lay a solid foundation on which to build a more prosperous financial future, free of debt.