Do you find yourself living on paycheck to paycheck?
Does the arrival of your credit card statements fill you with dread?
Do you find yourself losing sleep over debt?
If you answered yes, to any of the above, chances are you’ve been struggling with a debt problem of some kind.
In fact, from a recent 2019 study, it was determined that two out of three Americans surveyed admitted to having no idea when or if ever they would be free of debt. From mortgages to student loans, it can clearly be seen that debt has become a pervasive part of our lives.
Despite healthy employment numbers, the reality is that salaries in the United States have been stagnant for a number of years now. Further compounding this issue is the fact that the cost of living in the United States has been steadily increasing with time.
All of this adds up to the problem of it becoming more and more difficult to make ends meet each month. Because of this, some folks end up turning to debt to stretch out their finances for the month.
When left unchecked however, out-of-control debt can quickly become a major problem and you’ll probably end up paying for more than you bargained for. Fortunately, there’s still hope on the horizon with some self-discipline and a little motivation.
To get you started, here’s our guide on how you can quickly pay off your credit card debt.
1. Start paying off your credit card debt
There’s nothing more daunting than being faced down with a mountain of debt. While it may be depressing to look at, you should start by paying off your credit card(s) as quickly as you can.
With the frankly frightening interest rates charged by banks, credit card debt can grow rapidly over time. So, while you may be tempted to skip on a payment or two, it’s best that you start paying off your balance as soon as you can.
Also, as a rule of thumb, you should always ensure that you’re paying more than the minimum payment required. Many banks conveniently place the minimum amount owed at the front or the bottom of your credit card statement.
The minimum amount owed is usually sufficient to cover your interest charges and any other fees due. This means that you’re just making payments on interest owed and not actually paying off your initial balance.
2. Go back to cash
As the old saying goes, cash is indeed king. Paying with cash allows you to avoid any debts and ensures that your spending is kept honest.
From a study conducted by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau it was discovered that paying with cash made us much more likely to be aware of our spending. The constant reminder that payments were being made with hard-earned cash encouraged consumers to be more prudent in their spending habits.
Thus, if you find yourself making frivolous purchases every month, paying exclusively with cash is an effective way to help you curb your spending.
Oftentimes, you’ll find yourself thinking twice before spending unnecessarily. Before long, you’ll find yourself using your credit card less and less.
While you shouldn’t cut your credit card in two, exercising some measure of financial prudence in your life will help you significantly cut back on the expenses.
3. Check your bank balances regularly
This may seem like an unorthodox method of controlling your spending but checking your bank account regularly can be surprisingly effective. By keeping track of your spending, you’ll be much more careful with your money.
You’ll find yourself thinking twice about eating out or making unnecessary purchases. This is because your bank account balance will serve as a reminder of how much cash you’ve been using.
While it sounds depressing, this approach has helped this writer curb some of his more excessive spending.
4. Perform a self-check of your expenses
Going about our day-to-day lives, it can be easy to miss things. Things like the beauty of the setting sun or the smell of cut grass on a summer day or the fact that you’re spending an excessive amount on useless things.
Yes. The fact is that many of us fail to thoroughly check our monthly expenses. Most of the time, we just wince at the bill and make payment.
However, when you take a closer look at your cash outflows, you’ll find that there are plenty of things that you could save on. From expensive meals outside to over-priced internet plans, you’ll realize that there are plenty of things that you can do without.
You can still do things you like, even if you want to bet on the Breeders cup races or buy the latest videogame of FIFA 20. Still, you need to wage your money responsibly, so you do not spend more than what you have.
Living with debt is a choice. Oftentimes we let the trappings of this world burden us. With these three simple tips on how you can cut down on credit card debt, you can say goodbye to debt as you welcome the future.