by Susan Paige
Nobody likes being in debt. While it is sometimes unavoidable when you’re purchasing your first house or a brand new car, it is far too often a bed of our own making. Whether because of bad decisions or being laid off from work, there are some simple ways to avoid succumbing to endless piles of debt.
Still Haven’t Made a Budget?
If you’ve yet to make an official budget for yourself, it will be much easier to fall into debt. Without a budget, you don’t know how much you’re able to spend, where to allocate your money, or how much you’ll be left with at the end of the month. Do yourself a favor: put your wallet down and figure out a budget that works for you before spending another penny. You might just find that you’ve been spending much more than you initially thought on things you don’t really need.
Will it Fit on the Credit Card?
Before you swipe your credit card to buy something, stop and ask yourself: could you afford this with cash? If the answer is no, you might want to stick the credit card back in your wallet. Many people lose themselves with credit cards, thinking they can afford things that they actually can’t and swiping them indefinitely. While credit cards can actually be very beneficial when used responsibly, you certainly don’t want to rack up credit card debt on thousands of dollars worth of items without the physical cash to back it up.
Sacrifices Must be Made
It would be nice if we could simply have everything we wanted, but unfortunately, that’s not how life works. If you don’t want to fall into debt, sacrifices must be made along the way. This might mean cutting back on nights out on the town, putting off home upgrades like a new oven and that zero entry shower you’ve been looking forward to, or even canceling some of your streaming subscriptions. Eventually, you’ll get to a place where you can afford to purchase these things, but if the time isn’t right, you don’t want to go into debt just to have them.
In Case of Emergency
Things happen. Everybody runs into the occasional unexpected situation where they need money that they don’t have, whether to repair the house, pay for a doctor’s appointment, or fix their car. When this happens, it’s good to have an emergency fund for just such an occasion. By putting a certain amount of money away as a backup, you won’t have to worry about spending money that you don’t have when the situation calls for it.
No Debt? No Problem
By implementing these simple tips, you can avoid stumbling into the pitfalls of debt that seem to leech you of every penny. You may not always be able to live debt-free, such as when you need to make big money purchases like a house or a car, but by taking certain measures, you can guarantee that you won’t run into avoidable debt anytime soon.