The First Step To Being Debt Free Is To Stop Going Into More Debt
Most everyone would love to be debt free and pile up some savings, right? Well, the first step on your journey to debt freedom is to STOP GOING INTO MORE DEBT! Iâ€™m not yelling at you, just making a point of how important it is to flip that â€œDebt Switchâ€ in your mind to the OFF position.
Butâ€¦the transmission goes out, thereâ€™s an illness, your dishwasher floods, or youâ€™re A/C dies. Sometimes life just happens that way. If you donâ€™t have some money set aside just for emergencies, your only option when the unexpected happens is to whip out your credit card and take on more debt.
By saving $1,000 for a starter emergency fund, you will be able to deal with most of the emergency expenses that come up. This will ensure that you never again need to turn to credit cards and debt when life doesnâ€™t go as planned.
To help you meet this goal:Â Â
10 Ways To Save $1,000 In 1 Month!
1. Pick Up Some OT â€“ This one is pretty simple. If your work situation allows, try to pick up some overtime, an extra shift, or a special project. It may feel like you are putting in a lot of work, but keep in mind that this is only a temporary blitz to jumpstart your debt-free plan.Â
Potential Household Savings: $200-$1000
2. Do Odd Jobs â€“ If your day job doesnâ€™t allow for OT, do some odd jobs around your neighborhood. Do yard work, tree-trimming, wash cars, clean houses, walk dogs, baby-sit, or open an old fashioned lemonade standâ€¦anything you can do to get some extra income. Every dollar gets you closer to your goals.Â Â Â Potential Household Savings: $100-$400
3. Sell Some Stuff â€“ You canâ€™t fit those jeans, you havenâ€™t played tennis in years, and that prized collection of Beanie Babies isnâ€™t doing you any good. If youâ€™re serious about building your savings and paying off debt, you need to get about the business of selling some stuff. Think Craigslist, Ebay, Amazon, consignment sales and garage sales. If you havenâ€™t used it in a year, itâ€™s time to sell it. Just think of all the extra money and closet space youâ€™ll have!Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â
Potential Household Savings: $100-$500
4. Sell Your Blood. Iâ€™m not talking about calling your neighborhood vampire to make a street deal here. Most people can donate their plasma (the liquid part of your blood) twice per week at an average of $30-$35 per donation. So, you can legitimately make up to $70/week selling your blood plasma. To find a plasma collection center near you, visit http://bitly.com/e69qFz .Â Â Â Â Â Potential Household Savings: $280-$560
5. Cut Out Dining Out. Â Restaurants offer convenience, good food and a relaxing atmosphere. But as you know, you are paying for every bit of it. If you want to get intense and kick-start your debt-free journey, take a 1 month restaurant hiatus. The average American family spends $220 per month on eating out. You may spend more or less, but this savings adds up fast.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Potential Household Savings: $200-$300
6. Lose the Latte.Â Letâ€™s be honest, we all love â€œthe bucks.â€ A Grande, Triple Shot, Fat Free, Soy Milk Caramel Macchiato with no foam is a tasty pick-me-up. But when you spend $3.50 on coffee 4-7 times per week, you are drinking away your savings. Swear off the fancy coffee drinks for 1 month, brew a cup at home, and watch your savings grow like a Brazilian Coffee Tree.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Potential Household Savings: $50-$140
7. Lay Off of the Luxury Services â€“Nobody really enjoys cleaning the house, mowing the grass, walking the dog or washing the car. So, in an attempt to save our time and energy, we outsource these services to a maid, lawn care company, dog-walker or auto-detailer. Cutting out these services for 1 month can go a long way toward meeting your $1,000 goal.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Potential Household Savings: $300-$400
8. Tighten Your Grocery Budgetâ€“ When Katy and I got serious controlling our spending, we were shocked by how much we were spending on groceries. For a household of 2, we were spending $700 per month on groceries. By carefully planning our meals, not wasting food, and limiting the â€œconvenience foodsâ€ we bought we were able to cut our grocery bill down to only $400 per month. Take a look at your current grocery spending and see where you can make some cuts.
Potential Household Savings: $200-$400
9. Skip the Convenience Store â€“ At times in my life I would stop at a convenience store every single day to pick up a little something. This mindless nickel and dime spending adds up. A daily stop at a convenience store costs an average of $3. That adds up to $90 per month. If your spouse does the same, thatâ€™s $180. Throw in some spending on your kids, and you can easily blow upwards of $200 per month. For 1 month, plan ahead for your snacks away from home and put all that saved money toward your starter emergency fund.Â
Â Potential Household Savings: $150-$200
10. Entertain Yourself â€“Movies, bowling, video games, sports events, golf, Â huntingâ€¦these are all fun, but they all cost money. Instead of spending money on your fun, learn to enjoy free forms of leisure. Go to the park, read a book, play a board game, and watch movies you already own. Remember that what you are doing isnâ€™t as important as simply enjoying being with your friends and family.Â Â Â Â Potential Household Savings: $50-$100
It takes some hard work, focus, and sacrifice to get out of debt and build savings. Choose and implement some of these changes and take the first step toward being debt free by building your $1,000 starter emergency fund. You can do this!
This is your money and your lifeâ€¦take control!