ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Tips to Eliminate Debt

Updated on January 31, 2011

If you are in debt and want to take charge of your money and finance, this article has steps to help - what to do now, what to do next along with some tips for the way forward to stay debt free.

Whether the amount of money you owe is so large that if it were released it'd cause a tsunami or high enough to cause you sleepless nights, here are tips to get rid of debt.

If your debt is high relative to your income, accept that it may take time to get rid of your debt. It probably took a long time to get into this debt position so it can take a long time to pay it off and also to change habits.

The path may not be smooth but taking charge is to be applauded for taking action. You need to make and implement some difficult decisions and sometimes you will go backwards. But keep faith that you can achieve you goals and budget planning is a good first step.

What’s happening now?

You need to take control of your money and even though this will be very difficult, you must make time to look your current position and write down:

  • How much debt you have?
  • List everyone you owe money to,
  • Alongside the list of names, write the amount you owe and in a separate column write down the interest you are paying.

Accept responsibility for the position you are in. Make a resolution to go the hard yards and change your position.

What Steps to Take Now?

  • Look closely at your list of expenditure and identify where you can reduce spending. This is the first step in budget planning reduce debt.
  • Establish if you are able to commit more than you are currently paying towards your debt commitments. That might mean re-doing your personal budget.
  • Allocate more money to the debt with the highest interest, whilst still repaying the minimum (at least) of the other debts.
  • Once the highest interest debt has been paid off, work on eliminating the debt with the next highest interest.
  • If you are unable to meet some of your debt obligations, talk to the provider of that debt to arrange for ways you can repay it over a longer time frame.
  • Think about consolidating your debt. If used wisely its a tool to cut your overall costs. If there is equity in your home you may wish to talk to your financial advisers about increasing your mortgage which is going to be a lower interest rate than other debt, particularly store and credit cards. I hesitate to mention this as an option because all too often high when the high interest debt is swallowed by extending a mortgage, debt piles up again on the higher interest cards so the overall debt position increases.

Staying out of Debt

  • Live within your means. Accept that nearly everyone hankers after more money than they currently earn. If you are dissatisfied with your income, find ways to increase it rather than spend beyond it.
  • Regularly monitor your expenditure to ensure you are on track. Keep account of those $1 and $2 purchases – they mount up.
  • Destroy some or all of your credit cards. If this is too drastic, leave them at home. That way, if you want to make an impulse purchase, you will at least have time to reconsider while on the way home to retrieve them.
  • Find free activities in your city or town to reduce entertainment costs.
  • Examine how and why you got into debt. You may have issues with your attitude towards money so get help if necessary.
  • Some people find it easier to live paying by cash. Try it to see if that works for you. Establish how much you need to, or can afford to, live on each month, and then withdraw that amount in cash each week. When that money runs out, your spending stops.  

When you are finally debt free, put some controls in place so that you don’t repeat the experience. Debt cycles are a vice-like trap.

Lock Away Your Credit Cards

Some Ideas for Making More Money

Do anything legal to get additional income to get yourself out of the debt spiral hole sooner.

  • If feasible obtain another job to supplement your current income and put this income towards debt reduction.
  • Take in a boarder. 
  • Convert a hobby so that it generates additional money for you.
  • Look at everything in your house, wardrobe and garage. What can you sell to turn into cash? Use the proceeds to reduce your debt.

If the path isn’t smooth

Confronting and dealing with being in debt is very challenging.  Congratulations for try taking control to climb back to a positive financial position.  The path is unlikely to be smooth.  There will be times when you go backwards, buy something more on credit when you promised you wouldn’t; didn’t pay off the amount you promised yourself you would.  Don’t worry, look at what and why it happened and then try harder next month.

Above all, keep focused on what you are trying to achieve. Keep yourself motivated by setting milestones along the way and as you reduce debt, celebrate with some small treat – but make it inexpensive!

The Right Financial Software Can Help Keep you on Track

Quicken Home & Business 2009 [OLD VERSION]
Quicken Home & Business 2009 [OLD VERSION]

Tried and true Quicken - for use on Windows and XP. Take care the version is compatible.

 

And finally....

This article is copyright Travelespresso.  Do not copy.

Writers love feedback so feel free to leave a comment, rate the article and/or pass it onto friends.  Thank you.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • travelespresso profile imageAUTHOR

      travelespresso 

      7 years ago from Somewhere in this exciting world.

      Great to have your comments KA and BBnP. As always I appreciate comments and sometimes the messages, as in this instance, are very flattering. Thank you!

    • kenneth avery profile image

      Kenneth Avery 

      7 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      travelespresso: GREAT read. Great hub that I value. I am working to overcome debt that these tips are fantastic. I am glad to have found you on hubs. You are a great talent. A fan. Sincerely, Kenneth Avery, from a small, Mayberry-like town in northwest Alabama, named Hamilton. Voted Up, useful, interesting, awesome.

    • Barbsbitsnpieces profile image

      Barbara Anne Helberg 

      7 years ago from Napoleon, Henry County, Ohio, USA

      @travelespresso...Great information on tackling debt!

      You also have inspiring profile comments! Happy travels!

    • jammy15 profile image

      jammy15 

      7 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Very useful and practical tips. You pointed out the things which happen in practical life.

      Good hub !!

    • europewalker profile image

      europewalker 

      7 years ago

      Excellent hub with great info!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)