It is probably very accurate to say that many people share the same singular financial goal. This goal of course being to live without the weight of debt. However, it’s not always easy to stay on the right financial track. I know we would love to achieve this goal and as a result I have been looking into the methods that we can use to get us closer to this result. If you are like us and want to try and become debt-free in 2015, here are some tools and strategies that can help plan for this financial reality.
Here are some steps that I’ve come across that I think will help you to get rid of debt. Within each planning stage there are tools and resources that can compliment and elevate the level of effectiveness during this process.
Step 1: Identify and Set Goals
It is likely that you already have an overall picture of what financial goals you have in mind – and at the top of this list might be to lower your debt level. Typically we have short and long term goals that we want to achieve and time frame for when we want to accomplish them. In order to set your goals you will want to start by identifying them and also prioritizing which will need to happen first, and what the overall timeline will look like. Once again, if your goal is to be completely debt free by 2015, you will establish the exact month, and the ultimate deadline for making this debt-free life happen.
TOOL: DEBT CALCULATOR
To help you set a time frame for when you will be able to pay off your debt, you can access online tools such as a debt calculator to identify how long it will take you to pay off each of your debts. For example, your credit card debt. This debt calculator can help you to determine how much you will need to save also, in order to pay down your debt on time.
Step 2: Revise your Budget
In order to work towards your goal of saving enough money to pay off your debts, you will want to take another look at your budget. Going back to the basics of budgeting and finding a balance between saving and spending is a good place to start. Additionally, in order to rev up your savings, you will want to try saving even more than you have before. Being able to see a visual representation of how you plan to budget as well as continuing to track it as you go along will be a good method of identifying areas where you are perhaps overspending and areas where you can cut back and save more on a daily basis, a well as in the long run.
TOOL: ONLINE BUDGET
Downloading an online budget or calendar to perform your ongoing budgeting needs can provide a level of efficiency to your savings plan. You can also use a spreadsheet, software or another budgeting tool to help you as you track your spending. This overall strategy can allow you to work towards saving enough to pay off debts as you go and as 2015 fast approaches.
Step 3: Re-structure your Payment Plan
After you have determined how to to best budget your ongoing finances and how to reduce spending, you can take a look at your current payment plans. If you are making payments to multiple loan sources, such as mortgage, car, student loans, credit cards, etc. – another method you could look at that can help you pay off more debt, is to adjust your actual repayment plans. This could mean making larger payments or even more frequent payments that can get you another step closer to ridding yourself of debt that much faster.
TOOL: ONLINE DEBT REDUCTION ASSESSMENT
Accessing an online debt reduction assessment tool via any one of the major financial institutions websites, can assist you as you also learn more about your debt-relief options. Utilizing these tools take very little time and can help you arrive at a personalize plan for paying off your debts, including how to restructure and organize your payments to achieve more efficiency.
Step 4: Consult a Debt Relief Adviser
Lastly, it may also be a good idea to consult a debt-relief specialist to help you plan and implement the most effective debt-reduction plan. This may be the first step you take or it can be taken at any point during this process. You can basically factor this step in whenever you feel you need the help of an expert in this field and are having trouble managing on your own. Not only can these consultants advise and help you arrive at a plan that is best for you, they can also help keep you motivated as you work towards this important financial goal.
TOOL: REGISTERED DEBT RELIEF SPECIALISTS
You can search online for professionals who specialize in aiding Canadians devise and manage debt reduction plans. Ultimately, it is best to make sure the debt relief consultant has the proper qualifications, as many have received training and licenses through the government. Many of these sources of debt relief support will also provide online tools to help get you get started as well as contact information pertaining to where their offices are located and multiple methods of how to get in touch with them.
After looking at all the available resources that can help us meet our goal of becoming debt-free in 2015, it is very comforting to know that we have lots of methods of obtaining support and many strategies to get us to that point. I hope you find some of these options helpful as well and that they can also get you closer to ridding yourself of your debt over the course of the next year.