Today we live in a buy now, pay later world. We are bombarded with loan advertisements, readily available credit cards, houses that are unattainable without mortgages, and people who preach about investing in a college education with money that we don’t have yet. In fact, these practices are so accepted that we are sometimes frowned upon for not following them. Quite frankly, there was no way I could own a home without a mortgage. I became trapped in this buy now, pay later world. Now, after reading about Dave Ramsey and his debt payoff tips, I’m motivated to work towards financial freedom and a debt-free life!
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As my website name suggests, I live a very frugal and thrifty lifestyle. This has helped a lot with our debt payoff. Below, I share some of these frugal habits and seven debt payoff tips so you can have financial freedom too!
Table of Contents
7 Debt Payoff Tips
1. Make a Budget (and stick to it)
I can’t stress how important having a budget is! You need to be able to account for every incoming and outgoing dollar and cent. There is no way your finances can be organized if you move forward without a plan.
There is a reason why you can’t build a house without an approved blueprint or house plan and it is almost impossible to start up a new business without a business proposal/plan.
How would you feel if your country’s government never released an annual budget and spent ‘randomly’ throughout the year? Do you think large successful businesses operate without a financial plan?
So why do you think you can have financial success without a budget? Creating a budget (and sticking to it!) is the best debt payoff tip for a better financial life!
2. Stick to your budget
Anyone can make a budget; sticking to it is the difficult part. You can use several techniques to ensure that you don’t overspend. One is the Cash Envelope System. Basically, you use various envelopes to keep your money.
If you allocate $150 per week for groceries in your budget, then you put this $150 into your ‘groceries‘ envelope. Every time you go to the grocery store, you can only use money from this envelope to purchase.
Follow this rule for every other category in your budget plan.
You can also develop the habit of writing down your expenditures and keeping your receipts for the month. This can help you keep track of your spending and keep you in check if necessary.
3. Meal Plan
By now you realize that much of your journey to financial freedom requires planning. And this includes planning your meals. You don’t need a fancy planner or any special materials (but I use this and I LOVE it!).
All you need to do is decide what you’re going to cook for every day of the upcoming week and write it down. After I started doing this, I saved at least $500-$600 per month on my grocery bill. Moving forward with a meal plan took the guessing out of things.
With a weekly meal plan, I was able to make a weekly grocery list. I go through the meal plan, one meal at a time to determine exactly what ingredients I need for the week. I also double check my pantry to ensure that I don’t buy items that I already have (especially perishables!).
Reduce waste by storing food properly and eating leftovers on designated days. Remember, like a budget, meal planning only works (as a debt payoff tip) if you stick to it!
Pssst! Did you know you can save more money by meal planning? Meal Planning saves me thousands of dollars every year! Not sure how to get started? Grab a copy of my free Meal Planning e-guide below.
4. Adopt a Frugal Lifestyle
Little changes can make a big difference. Simple habits like line-drying clothes instead of using the dryer or unplugging electronics when not in use can result in huge savings.
Reevaluate certain bills and decide if they are necessary. For example, choose the cheapest cell phone plan, get a good deal on a cable & internet combo and opt out of any unneeded costly subscriptions.
Couponing, reducing waste, sticking to your meal plan and not getting take-out also helps!
Check out these 25 Cheap Date Ideas for your new frugal life!
5. Pay more than your minimum
With all your ‘extra savings’ from your new frugal habits, pay more than your monthly minimum on every debt you have. The interest alone can keep you in a never-ending cycle of debt.
So if you want financial freedom, start allocating more to your debt than you’re required to pay per month.
6. Have a few no-spend days
No-spend days are simply designated days where you spend no money. They allow you to challenge yourself to spend less and save more.
Allocate several no-spend days (or better yet, no-spend weekends) for the month and become closer to being debt free.
7. Develop a side-hustle
Your objective is to put more money towards your debt payment by living frugally AND by increasing your incoming money. One sure way to do this is through a side-hustle.
What are you good at that someone would pay you to provide to them? Can you tutor or give extra lessons? Is babysitting on your list of skills? Are you good at baking? Do you have awesome writing skills? Choose something that you’re good at and love to do!
Blogging is also a great option as a side-hustle today. It’s not a ‘get rich overnight’ method. However, if you love writing, it can start to pay well, after some time and hard work!
Want to try blogging as a side-hustle? Check out my easy step by step tutorial on How to Start a Blog (that Generates a Monthly Income). You can have a side hustle in less than 15 minutes!
Share this journey with someone who will be uplifting and positive. The journey to debt payoff is not an easy one and sharing your feelings and progress with your spouse, a relative or friend who you trust can help you through the rough patches.
Also, knowing that you’re accountable to someone can keep you on track and well on your way to your debt payoff. Most importantly, remember to take baby steps and keep working towards your dream of a debt-free life.
Related: How to Save Money Fast
Are there any other debt payoff tips that you would add to this list? Or are you chipping away at your debt little by little too? Share with us in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!
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OHH, and I’m on Pinterest! 🙂
***Before you go, are you looking to manage your money better this year? Sign up for my free 5-Days Money Management Course!***
Until next time,
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