There is usually only one way that we get ourselves into debt, overspending, but it usually takes a combination of fixes to try to get you out of the hole you created for yourself. It can take years to get out of debt completely, but the trick is to not fall back into your old ways, so start with a new disciplined debt payoff program so you can begin your new debt-free lifestyle.
Stop Charging Everything
The first way may not eliminate debt overnight, but it is the first step in that making sure the balance does not continue to rise by eliminating putting everything on your credit card. A good way to curb spending and make sure your hard-earned income is spent in the right place is by creating and following a household budget. By analyzing every dollar that comes in and out, you can ensure that the money coming in is greater than what is spent.
Pay More than the Minimum
Keeping in mind that you should be contributing to savings accounts, every remaining dollar should be spent making sure the debt is paid down. If you only make the minimum payments, most, if not all, will go towards interest and you will see little going towards paying down the principal balance, so you could be making minimum payments for an entire year and if the interest and balance are high enough, see no dent into the total outstanding debt.
Reduce Unnecessary Spending
Now that the credit card spending spree has calmed down and every remaining dollar is put towards paying off debt and are starting to enjoy seeing the principal start to decrease, you still need help with freeing up some extra cash to make additional payments. Reducing unnecessary spending will be the next order of business, as now spending needs to come under a microscope and reduce those unneeded expenses. A good place to begin is to start eating at home instead of out, and you will see the savings pile up.
Tackle One Account at a Time
It can be overwhelming if you have many accounts, knowing which one to pay off first, not really seeing much of an improvement if all the balances still remain, so it may actually help you to pay off one at a time. You can start with the account with the highest interest first, or the highest balance first, or if you want to see immediate motivation by seeing a zero balance: pay the with card with the least balance.
Use Extra Income for Additional Payments
If money is tight, you are doing all the right things, and still can’t seem to free up any extra money to put towards paying off debt, then generating extra income might be an option. Picking up a side job in waiting tables, or working retail could gain you plenty of extra cash on a regular basis to use to pay each month, or if you are looking for quick cash, then maybe taking inventory at home and selling on Craigslist or eBay might help.