Taming your Household Debt
A big part of dealing with bankruptcy is taking control of your household budget and spending habits. For the most part, Canadians still tend to overspend, even small things such as a daily coffee on the way to work, or eating out slowly adds up over the month.
When reviewing your monthly expenditures, you need to see how necessary some of these expenditures actually are. You need to see what items can be cut and look for ways to help reduce your monthly spending. Granted, going through the drive thru and getting a large one and one every work day hits the spot and helps get the day going, but it also adds up over each week, monthly and yearly.
Keeping Track of your Monthly Finances
To help see where you are are spending your money on a monthly/weekly basis, saving your receipts and keeping track of these spending habits in a ledger would be a good start. Looking back over the months, you can see how much you spend on restaurants, take out, utilities, movies, groceries, entertainment etc.
Wants vs. Needs
Cutting back on items will require you to list them within two categories, Wants, and Needs. While going through each of these lists, you need to determine the items within the want category that can be cut back, and/or reduce on a weekly/monthly budget.
When you are keeping track of your monthly expenditures, this can help with spotting any monthly payments that you have forgotten about that you do not actually use or could do without. If you are paying for an item each month that you are not actively using, then this would be a much easier item to give up and help save some money.
Low Cost Options
Saving money and finding inexpensive ways to entertain your family or kids is always on the to-do list. Your local library is a great source, from Books, (ebooks), magazines, some libraries may have free subscriptions to magazines available for your smart phone or tablet, music Cds and DVD/Blu Ray movies. Your local library is a great low cost option.
Credit Card Cuts?
Abstaining from using your credit card is essential. When dealing with debt, removing those high interest credit cards should be on the list. If you change over to using the actual money on hand in your back account, or in pocket, this will help you think twice before making that purchase.
Keep on top of your Payments
Avoiding or not paying our bills is never a good idea. It can hurt your credit score and the late payments can incur some sort of a late fee. Working to keep these payments made on time is essential.
Have Emergency Funds Available
This will not always be an easy option for some, but working to save up money for some sort of an emergency fund can help with reducing the amount that you go into debt further. While the typical emergency fund should be 3 to 6 months of your actual income, this figure could be hard to save for some. So working towards saving on a monthly basis will be a good start. Chances are there will be some sort of emergency you will need to deal with, and having a bit of money saved for that occasion will help.
Pay down that Debt
When you get a bit of extra money, either from your tax return or a bonus, using this money to pay down your high interest debts would be the best use of this money. This extra money should be used to help lower your debt.
If you are having financial difficulties, book a free consultation with David Sklar and Associates. We have 6 locations in the Toronto area you are welcome to call us a 416-498-9200