We all know the federal government can spend money without regard for having the money to spend. You and I have no such ability. We must have the money in hand or we soon find ourselves in very difficult circumstances.
If you are finding it difficult to meet your monthly expenses, you are not alone, but be assured there are ways to extricate yourself from this difficult situation.
The average U.S. household debt is now $155,622 or more than $15 trillion, which is up over 6.2% from the previous year. Hopefully, you are below average in this statistic!
To put the amount into perspective, if you could stack the total amount in one-dollar bills, the height of the stack would reach the moon, come back to the Earth, and reach the moon a second time and then some.
Based on this statistic alone, it's no surprise that many people can't afford monthly expenses. Many people have a debt to settle—a lot of it. The solution might seem as easy as cutting costs and paying off the debt. But that's easier said than done.
How can you cut costs and pay off debt when you can't even afford your necessary monthly expenses?
1. Begin to keep track of your spending habits. Tracking your purchases will help you discover exactly where your money is going and which bills need extra attention.
● When you take the time to note down expenses for the last 30 to 60 days, you will begin to see which bills are consuming a large amount of your income.
● People used to track down expenses by writing them down as they happened. That exercise might seem cumbersome today, but it is very effective. Today, some apps can help you track your expenses. Do some research to find one that works well and is easy to use.
2. Create a budget and stick to it. When you can't afford monthly expenses, it's essential to create a budget. Making a budget will help you know how much money you can spend on bills and other expenses.
● Many free budgeting software programs can help you keep track of your spending habits and create a plan for the future that you can follow.
3. Review all subscriptions and cut unnecessary ones out. Many people have monthly subscriptions for various services and products, which may or may not be helpful to them. But sticking with a monthly subscription without questioning whether it's valid or not is practically throwing money away.
● It's essential to determine whether a subscription service is valuable to you before committing to it for an extended period. Reviews from others (such as on Amazon) may help. In some cases, you might find that a subscription service isn't worth your monthly payment after all.
● Alternatively, ask yourself: Do I need this subscription? Do I use this subscription enough times to justify the cost? Can I survive without this subscription? After a careful analysis, you might find that certain subscriptions are nice to have but not necessary. Unsubscribe.
● You might think a subscription costs a measly amount of money. But it quickly adds up.
● Use this same process on other expenses too. Using this simple concept of eliminating an unnecessary expense can help you save a significant amount of money, which you can then use to pay off debt and cover other expenses.
Managing your expenses helps you to maintain a healthier financial lifestyle and raise your happiness levels. You might need the willpower to make effective changes, but the results are worth it.
Another option you may wish to consider is Tally. Please note that I have not used this app and do not necessarily recommend it, so please do your due diligence.
Thinking about the present day with your finances is important, but also look at the bigger picture. Even minor improvements can help you to get back in the black on your expenses and achieve your goals.
Don’t give up. You can do this!
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