Pull up a chair and have a seat - Welcome to the ever growing club of consumer debt. Your biggest challenge now is to dig yourself out of this situation and avoid having to pay anyone to help you do it.
The options at this stage are usually as follow (depending on the level of credit card debt):
• Consolidate into a loan.
• Debt Management.
• Do Nothing.
• Just pay off the cards over as long as it takes.
• Make the minimum payments and keep spending.
• Make an effective DIY plan.
The more popular solutions - such as consolidation loans and debt management -we see being touted everywhere are the ones that put your money in other people’s pocket. I don’t know about you but for me becoming free from debt should not involve spending more money, or *borrowing your way out of debt*.
So how does a DIY system work?
To break it down into 5 steps it looks something like this:
1. Address your spending habits and why you are in this situation.
To ever win with money and have a comfortable financial future you have to control your money – not the other way round. Take complete control and set yourself some realistic yet desirable goals for the future.
2. Know your options, the ins and outs of how they work – and why they are not for you.
Along the way you will be tempted by quick fix ‘make it all better’ solutions like consolidation loans and debt management. As mentioned already there is a multibillion dollar industry making a very healthy profit from consumer debt. Your DIY plan does not involve *paying to get out of debt*.
3. Know your situation.
Any debt relief system requires a bit of budgeting. As long you’ve followed the rest of the plan so far, have desirable goals and no intention of taking an easy -and expensive – way out you won’t have trouble budgeting.
The other thing to know is your credit score. There are a staggering amount of mistakes found on credit scores that result in people paying more interest than they should. If you are eligible for lower rates and 0% APR cards to move expensive balances on to – you need to know about it.
4. Minimise outgoings, Maximise income and leverage your cash flow.
If you could be paying less for utilities and day to day expenses you should. There is a very fine art of money saving that you will become very good at if you’re going to be successful at this.
Home economics, consumer education and bargain hunting can save you incredible amounts of cash that can go toward paying off your debt quicker.
If you’re really serious you can take it a step further and create a secondary source of income. Be it a second job, or using a natural skill/strength you have that can earn you money in your spare time.
With the opportunities available online it’s never been easier to find those who are seeking out some knowledge, experience and skills that you have and that they would pay you money for.
5. Form your system and put it into action.
Having followed the first 4 steps and laid some sturdy foundations you are now in a position to develop a quite powerful ‘snowball’ plan. That is a system that gains momentum as you execute it.
This step is completely dependant on the first 4 steps and generating an extra figure that you can assign to snowballing your credit card debt. As the debts get paid off the figure grows and subsequently clears the rest of the debts a lot quicker – saving you a tidy amount of interest in the process.
It is very possible use a DIY plan and enjoy great success from it, yes it takes a bit of hard work and discipline on your part but the alternatives just cost you more and keep you in debt for longer.
It’s your money, it’s your life – if you want to truly own them both then you have to take control – not give it over to someone else. Control or be controlled, the choice is yours.