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10 Things You Can Give Up To Increase Your Debt Payment Fund

frustrated looking woman looking at a laptopDespite the rising confidence of consumers towards our economy, it remains to be a fact that we need to continue working hard to finance our debt payment fund. The recent data from the Federal Bank of New York revealed a continuing rise in consumer debt. The number itself is already alarming. If you take into consideration the long term effects of debt, you will realize just how important it is for us to lower our current debt level.

An article published early this March on USAToday.com revealed how student loans are expected to have a long term impact on our economy. The article mentioned how more 40 million Americans owe $1.2 trillion worth of student loans. It has now surpassed all types of consumer credit – save for housing loans.

It is a devastating picture for young adults to be so buried in debt even before they have been given a chance to prove themselves in the corporate world. While this may drive when to work hard to finance their debt payment fund, it puts them in a compromising position when it comes to investments. At an age when they should have been driving their own vehicles, they could not afford it. Home ownership is also something that is delayed because of this debt. Instead of buying their own home, they are forced to live with their parents just so they can save up and pay down their student loan debts.

If you scrutinize the statistics about debt, you will realize that we need to look for extreme measures to increase debt payment fund. But in some cases you will realize that the changes does not have to be too drastic. You can spot a little sacrifice here and there and it can add up as a huge amount in your monthly credit payments.

10 things you can cut off to have more money for debt payments

Whether you are in the midst or still trying to survive a looming financial crisis, you should know that no small feat is too little for you to try. Do not think that the small savings you get from simple changes will not matter. When it comes to your money, even a penny will matter.

Given that thought, here are 10 things that you may want to consider cutting off to help you grow your debt payment fund.

  1. Less dining out. Compared to the frequency that we spend eating in our homes or in restaurants and the amount that we spend on each, you need to realize that the latter costs us so much more. If you are used to grabbing that take out every night – you need to change that habit. Just do your grocery every weekend and cook your meals at home.

  2. Brown bag your lunch. Another simple change that can accumulate to be a huge addition to your debt payment fund is when you brown bag your lunch to work. If you do not like cooking in the morning, you can prepare your lunch at night. Just heat your food in the microwave when you get to the office. That will really cut back on your daily expenses by $5-$10. If you compute that at 25 days a month, it will add up to $125 to $250. In a year, that can add $1,500 to $3,000 towards your credit contributions.

  3. Cancel gym memberships. Inquire with your local community center if they have their own gym equipment. You can utilize that to save on gym membership fees. This can save you around $100 a month and you do not have to sacrifice your exercise routine. You can also access training videos via Youtube. Jogging and making use of your trusty bike can also help you with your cardio exercises.

  4. Bundle your Internet. You do not really have to cut your Internet subscription but you may want to bundle it together with your phone or cable subscriptions. The savings will not be as great as your other options but it can add up.

  5. Cut the cable. Some people think that they cannot live without a cable subscription when it fact, they can. If you find yourself wanting to catch the latest sports event, why not organize a get together a friend’s house (who has cable) and watch as a group? Not only will it cost you less, it will also give you a chance to bond with your peers.

  6. Eat healthy. If you are wondering how you will cut down on food costs, prioritizing the healthy food choices will do the trick. Believe it or not, the unhealthy food are sometimes the ones that cost you unnecessary money. Why not cut back on potato chips, soda, chocolate and other junk food? Concentrate on rice, beans, vegetables and oatmeal. These will fill you up without having to eat a lot. Not only as your saving, you are taking in healthier food choices.

  7. Avoid new clothes. Unless it is really necessary, do not buy new clothes. Who cares if you wear the same thing over and over again? With all the tips you can see online or in magazines, you can accessorize the same outfit and make it appear like you are not repeating your wardrobe.

  8. Buy used everything. From furniture to clothing and electronic, you may want to consider buying only used things from now on. At least, until you have paid off your debts. If you really have to buy clothes, just buy used and whatever you save should be placed in your debt payment fund.

  9. Use coupons. For some people, coupons have become their way of living. We even have reality shows dedicated to this purchasing tool. The dollar or two that you save for every purchase can really boost your credit payments.

  10. Lower car expenses. You do not have to go to the extreme by getting rid of your vehicle but you may want to stick with just one. Not only will you benefit from the sale of the second car (if you have one), you will also cut back on costs when it comes to insurance, gas, car repairs, etc. You can check how much your car will really cost you if you go to Edmunds.com. They have a true cost to own calculator that can really help you out.

You can opt to choose only a few from these or you can come up with your own set of saving strategies. Do not worry about the amount at first. No matter how small, remember that it will all add up in the end.

Pay off debt fast to avoid the negative side effects

The Bank for International Settlements published a study on BIS.org that discussed the effect of debt in general. The study revealed that when you borrow in moderation, debt can improve your personal wealth and aid in the growth of your finances. But if it is already too high, it can be destructive already. The study mentioned that for household debt, 85% of the GDP is the limit. Anything more than that can drive the consumer down.

In truth, debt can dictate how you live your life. If it eats up a huge portion of your income, you cannot do anything but comply. Even if you want to move to a new job, you need to make sure that the income is enough to pay for your debt payment fund.

But beyond all of this is the alarming effect of debt in your emotional well being. Here are some of the negative effects that you can expect from being in debt.

  • Debt stress. This is a serious problem that borrowers are facing. It can affect not just your everyday disposition, it can also affect your health.

  • Relationships. Money is a powerful influence in a marriage, or any relationship for that matter. If you are not careful, you could end up putting a serious strain in the relationship if you do not deal with your debt trouble.

  • Delay financial investments. Another effect of debt is it can delay your personal wealth. It can keep you from investing in a car, a business or a home. That will seriously set you back.

These are more are some of the reasons why you have to work hard to grow your debt payment fund. Deal with your credit situation before things get out of hand.

4 Extreme Measures To Increase Your Debt Payment Fund

get out of debtAre you one of the millions who are constantly trying to get relief from credit problems? Millions of Americans are still in debt and it seems like they are bound to stay that way for a very long time. It seems that all of our budgets will always include a debt payment fund entry. Will we ever be free from credit obligations?

In an article published on The Wall Street journal website, consumer debt continues to rise. Although it was the slowest in 6 months, fact remains that it continues to grow. As the article on WSJ.com reveals, the non mortgage debts of Americans grew by 4.8% in November. It was slower than the 7% back in October. The statistical information mentions that the slow growth in caused by the lower credit card spending.

Despite this slow growth, you need to remember that even if it is smaller than the past, it is still an increase. It still means we need to pay off more than what we owe in the past.

That being said, getting a foothold on your finances means growing your debt payment fund significantly. But what can you do to give it an increase that is enough to put a huge dent on your debt balance?

4 ways that you can significantly boost your debt payment fund

Although people would increase their income to pay off debt, there are extreme ways that you can cut back on spending to grow your debt payments. We have 4 suggestions for you that will require a huge sacrifice from you and your family. If you want to get out of debt fast, no sacrifice should be too great to get what you want to happen.

Live on one income.

You know how couples decide to have a child and they have to make huge adjustments so they can survive on one income? After all, being their for your child is the greatest gift that you can give them. This is also something that you can do. You can discuss with your spouse or partner how you plan to do this but make a commitment to cut back on your spending so you can afford to live on one income. You can choose to live on the income of the one who earns the most. That should give you more room in your budget.

If you think that this is too extreme, you can try to adjust to it slowly. During the first month, you can allocate 25% of one income entirely for debt payments. As each month passes by, increase that by 25%. By the fourth month, you should be able to put the whole income into your debt payment fund.

Get rid of your car.

This is another extreme measure that you may want to seriously consider. If you think that you cannot live on one income alone, what about giving up your car? Did you know that the average annual expense that a person spends on a car is more than $9,000 a year? At least, this is what AAA.com reports back in April 2013. If you gave up your car, you will have to deal with the hassles of commute but you get to add $9,000 in your debt payments. You don’t have to worry about car maintenance/repair, insurance, rising gas prices and other expenses associated with owning a car. You can opt to join the commuters or you can ride your bike to work – whatever is applicable. If you opt for the latter, you get to exercise as you go to work and back.

If you have two cars, you can opt to give up just one car and carpool with your spouse/partner. Or you can give up both cars. That will mean an additional $18,000 a year to be sent to your debt payment fund. Do not worry because you really do not have to give up on a vehicle forever. This is only until you pay off all of your debts.

Downsize your home.

Another extreme adjustment that you can do to pay off your debts is to downsize your home. Mortgage loans are still the biggest debt that the average American household owes. If you can get rid of this, you can really put a lot of breathing space into your budget. We are not saying that you give up home ownership like our suggestion with your car. But what we are trying to say is to just live in a smaller house. This will really benefit you in more ways than you know. Instead of having all the extra rooms, just live in a home that has one room for the couple and one for each kid. Or have them share. One dining room and living room should be enough too. You do not really need a big backyard or front yard. You can sell your big house and buy a smaller one in cash. Settle your other debts and live debt free. The upkeep on a bigger home is more costly. Not only will you solve your mortgage problems, you can significantly lower your monthly expenses.

Stop using your credit cards.

Lastly, you can increase your debt payment fund if you stop using your credit cards. These card purchases can be quite a burden if you end up letting them grow. If you are used to making purchases with your card, you have to stop doing that. At least, you can give it up until you have full control of your finances. Buy things in cash for now. It is one of the most effective ways to make sure that you will live within your means.

If you do not want to close cards, you can use it every now and then – like once or twice every six months but only for small purchases. And make sure that you will pay them off immediately. What you are paying on interest can be added to your debt payment fund instead.

How to make paying off debt successful

Doing these extreme measures will really help you solve your debt problems. Increasing your budget for debt payments is one way that you can quickly get out of debt. As you diligently send in your monthly contributions, you can go on your way to achieve a life of financial freedom.

But before you can really achieve that, you have to completely pay off your debts first. Here are some tips that will help you pay off what you owe.

  • Get the support of the whole family. Everyone in the household should do their part as you try to grow your debt payment fund. Even your kids should be in on the effort. If anything it will help them understand the repercussions of irresponsible financial behavior.

  • Put off major purchases. It is not a good idea to make expensive purchases while you are still paying off your credit obligations. If it is not a matter of life and death, opt to use the money to get rid of your balance first.

  • Be very frugal with wants. We are not saying that you should completely eliminate your entertainment activities but you may want to be very frugal about it. Look for cheap alternatives that will help you enjoy your favorite activities without compromising your debt payments.

Getting out of debt can be as fast as you want – but that means you need to make some sacrifices. It doesn’t matter how you choose to get out of debt. There will always be changes in your life that has to be implemented. You cannot live the way you used to because that got you in debt. And if you have to make changes, why not make it as drastic as you can. The more you can sacrifice, the faster you can get out of debt.

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