Below you will find 1o Ways to Save Money to help you stay out of debt. Debt is an easy thing to get into but a hard thing to get out of.
I believe in the old saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. So instead of telling you how to get out of debt once you are in it, I am sharing some tips for staying out of debt. The best tip I can give is to not allow yourself to get there in the first place, but how do you do that? Here are 10 tips for staying out of debt.
10 Ways to Save Money: Stay out of Debt
1. Make a monthly budget and stick to it. If you have a budget plan in place, you can easily keep track of what you make and what needs to be set aside each month for your living expenses. This will allow you to see exactly where you are spending your money each month. I love seeing it broken down by category. It helps my family to make small changes to help increase our savings account.
2. Use cash only. No credit cards or debit cards. If you carry either, you will be tempted to overspend. I know that having a credit card and debit card can be necessary but if you go to the store with a particular amount of cash in your pocket then you will NOT be able to go over your budget.
3. Add an emergency fund into your budget to cover unexpected expenses. Even if you have a nice savings account or use a monthly budget you never know what expense might arise. It is a great idea to have a separate emergency fund. You may only be able to put a small amount into each month but that is okay. You never know when you will need it.
4. Cut back on entertainment and frivolous spending. Going out to dinner or to the movies every week starts to really add up. Start to cutback here and there and add that money to your savings account.
5. Try not to borrow money. Paying it back creates an extra bill and can dig you deep into debt. There are many times when you just do not have the money to pay for unexpected costs. What would you do in this case? Ask a friend or family member to borrow money? If possible, use your emergency fund or take some money from your savings account. The more money you borrow from people the more you will have to pay out each month.
6. Keep in mind the only debt you should acquire is for a home, education or car. It is tempting to get a store credit card and charge a TV or laptop, but it will put you into more debt. The only debt you should plan for is major expenses like your education or purchasing a new home.
7. Live within your means. There is no need to keep up with the Joneses. Yes, this one is really difficult to follow. Especially when there are always new and improved products being sold. I would suggest making your own guidelines. This could be something as simple as not buying new electronics or clothes until you reach a certain amount in your savings or allowing yourself 10% of your income each month to use towards new items. But, do not feel like you have to have whatever else does. Most people are living off of credit.
8. Be frugal. Use coupons, shop sales and buy in bulk. You can even check deal sites like Groupon to save money on entertainment. If you take a little time each week to plan your menu and match sales with coupons you can save a great deal of money on your grocery budget each month. If you are new to couponing be sure to read our beginner’s guide to make it simple.
9. Before calling in a professional to do repairs, analyze the problem and decide if it is something you may be able to fix yourself. Paying labor charges are extremely expensive and you can quickly get into debt when you need something repaired. See if you are able to purchase the part and fix it yourself. Now, I do NOT mean large projects. This is something on a smaller scale like a car repair or a leaky faucet.
10. Remind yourself every day how great it feels to be debt free. That amazing feeling is motivation toward staying debt free. It may be difficult each month saving your money and paying off your bills that you might feel the need to ‘reward’ yourself. This is fine, but just do it in moderation.
Even if you are only able to follow one of our 10 ways to save money to stay out of debt that is okay. It takes time and discipline to be debt-free. Take it one step at at time and your hard work will pay off.
Do you have any tips or advice to add to our 10 ways to save money and stay out of debt, please share in the comments below.