Credit Cardio: 4 Ways to Exercise Better Control Over Your Spending
Beyond Finance TeamPosted on Mar 15, 2018
You’ve done it! You successfully traversed another holiday shopping season. Well, maybe not successfully, and maybe it was more of a stumble than a traverse, but you made it through nonetheless! Now that the Yuletide joy has gone and the Season’s officially over, it’s time for the credit hangover to set in.
You wake up on January 1st and gaze disgustingly at your bloated debt to income ratio. How could you let your finances grow so out of shape? Wasn’t it just last summer that you swore to work off that excess debt that was beginning to form? But then it came time for the holidays, and the little progress you made on your debt to income ratio swiftly regressed as a growing gift list stretched your bank account to the point of bursting. Enough is enough. It’s a new year; it’s time to get disciplined, get credit debt relief, and expel those expenses. And we’ve got a credit cardio routine that will do the trick!
To begin, stop making discretionary purchases on your credit cards. Consider credit cards to be the ice cream of your personal finances. They provide short-term reward, but ultimately this comes at a cost. Indulging a bit every now and then won’t cause much harm, but if you turn this indulgence into a habit, you are guaranteed to see long-term negative implications on your financial health. It can be tough to deny the cravings, but who said debt management was easy?
Instead, when it comes to discretionary purchases, it is always best to use cash or a debit card, as they are the fruit and veggies of your personal finances. While it’s not quite as satisfying as using a credit card, it won’t form excess debt.
- Word of Advice: Minimum Efforts Yield Minimum Results
If you have excessive unsecured debt and are only making minimum payments to reduce the balance, it will take years to make any significant gains. Liken it to the novice gym-goer who aspires to rise through the ranks and one day become a professional body builder. If he only works out with the smallest weights in the gym, day-in-day-out, he will never see his goal through to fruition. If your unsecured debts are as large as Lou Ferrigno, you will never achieve your goal of becoming debt free by only making minimum payments.
- Your credit cardio workout routine: The Personal Budget
Creating a monthly budget to track your spending habits is imperative for stripping away excess debt and improving your debt to income ratio. The best part, you don’t need to come up with one from scratch. Luckily, there are numerous sources on the Internet that assist with crafting a budget that is tailored to your specific goals. If you aren’t tracking your results over time, there are no benchmarks to determine if you have made any progress towards achieving your goal. The secret to paying down your unsecured debt? Find a debt relief plan that works and stick with it!
- Recognize when it’s time to seek outside assistance
If your situation seems dire, if your credit limits are bursting at the seams, it may be time to seek the assistance of a debt settlement professional. There are debt settlement programs available to help people who are morbidly indebted, who have a poor debt to income ratio, and who are in hardship situations with their unsecured debt. However, you should know your debt settlement options before enrolling in a program. Ensure that the debt relief options you are considering align closest with your unique situation. You wouldn’t hire a boxing coach to teach a water aerobics class; the same standard should apply for seeking financial assistance.
At Beyond Finance, we have some of the most knowledgeable debt settlement “coaches” in the industry. We’ve helped hundreds of consumers settle their debts and save money. There are thousands more who have taken that first step and are on the path to a healthier financial future. Don’t let your excess debt prevent you from enjoying life.
For more help on how to pay off your credit cards, contact one of our Consultants at 1-800-495-4069. Make 2018 the year you become debt free!