Monday Musings: 1/19/2015 The First Steps to Take when Getting Out of Debt

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This post is by Bernie Carr,
Welcome to another Monday Musings, where we share interesting links about all things preparedness, as well as updates on the blog.
First, my updates…
Add your “two cents!”  For our avid readers, our giveaway for A Time to Endure by Kyle Pratt is still going on.  Read the review and sign up for the giveaway here.  All you have to do is enter your answer to the following question:  What threats are you most concerned about this 2015?  What steps are you taking to prepare?   There seems to be a common thread in the answers so far.  Add yours and I will do my best to post articles regarding your most pressing concerns.
When getting out of debt is a goal Like many of you, I too have some credit card debt that I am resolving to pay off.  Although I am frugal and have been careful with spending, I have some old debt from the last downturn that is still hanging around.

Whether you have old debts or new debt incurred from recent Christmas spending, you know that feeling that comes over you when you JUST KNOW you need to do something.  But just like prepping for the first time, planning to get out of debt can be overwhelming.

What first steps can you take to when you want to get out of debt?

1.  The first step is simple but requires self discipline:  Stop using your credit cards!  Do whatever you need to do to get out of the habit of using credit.

  • Don’t keep your credit cards in your wallet within easy reach-leave them at home.
  • Store the cards away in a safe deposit box.
  • Some people freeze their cards in a block of ice, or take the more drastic measure of cutting them up.
  • Even if you cut up your cards, don’t cancel the cards because some creditors will immediately expect you to pay the debt in full, OR, your credit rating will be negatively affected by the loss of credit.

2.  Check the balances for all your debts, interest rate and monthly payments so you know what you are up against.  Knowing this number will stop you from being in denial about how much you really owe.

Once you’ve done the two steps above, you’ll need to track and slash your spending and make a budget.  I am doing various cost cutting measures and will write about it in a future posts.

Please share your favorite money saving tips in the comments! 

Now for the links…


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  1. Appreciating the reminder!! I did those steps and was in process of paying off smallest bill first . . . . then, poof, got crazy busy and forgot. Will be back on it when I get home from work tonight!!! 🙂

  2. I just paid off one of my small loans. Now, I will put that extra money I have every month towards another loan. Pay that one off early. I ditched the credit cards long ago. Let me tell you, living a debt free lifestyle is tough! Worth it, but tough!

  3. I think it’s called snowball method or something like that. You set aside an amount much more than your minimum payment and pay that towards one card. And then when that’s paid off you add that amount to what you were paying on the next card or loan.

    I’ve got 2 credit cards and a student loan to pay off haha… I did learn to keep my credit cards out of my wallet too (One time I accidentally used an already maxed CC to buy gas and… oh man. Not fun I can tell you that much!)

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