10 Financial Tips to Get Out of Debt Quicker
We’ve been doing a lot to make changes to our budget to get out of debt quicker. We’ve had some inquiries on exactly what some of those financial changes have been. We wanted to share our 10 financial tips to get out of debt quicker, with all of you. They’ve really worked for us! We hope that they will do the same for you.
Make a Budget
It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. We just used a free one I found on Google Drive. Put all of your income into it and all of your bills and debt into it. This way, at the very least, you have a list of what money is coming in and what’s going out. Record all money you spend throughout the month in your budget so you can see patterns of where you are overspending.
Cut Your Extra Want Expenses
After you’ve made a budget and can see where your money is going, cut all those unnecessary wants. You know, all that stuff you buy just because you want it, but you don’t really need it. Do you really need that Starbucks? How about another color of Converse? Cut out all of those wants and you will have a lot more money to pay towards getting out of debt quicker.
Make a Meal Plan with a Shopping List
We now plan all of our meals and make our weekly shopping list while we plan out the meals. That way we can take inventory of what’s already in our pantry and what we need to pick up. We even include lunches for the work week to make sure we don’t have to buy them out. We only get what’s on the list, don’t shop while we are hungry and stay on the outer ring of the grocery store. Food is cheaper there and you aren’t tempted by all the expensive junk on the inner aisles.
Stop Eating Out
Stop eating out- We use to spend so much money on eating out every week. It wasn’t usual for us to go out multiple times per week and for our check to be between $60 and $100, or even more. If we wanted to go out to eat, we very rarely thought twice about going out. Now, we very rarely do.
You save so much money by not eating out. For example, for the past three years we’ve gone out to fondue every year on Easter. Every time it cost us over $100. This year we stayed home and made an Easter lunch instead. It cost us less than $30, we had a ton of food and it feed one more person than the over $100 would feed. It also provided lunch to us for the next day. That Easter lunch was a big splurge when you consider we are now living on about $100 per week for groceries.
No, Seriously. You can do it. We started carpooling together almost a year ago. It saves us over $200 per month. I kid you not. I get to work earlier than I did when I drove myself and as a result now work 4/10s. I love having a three day weekend every week and saving that extra money. I use that extra day off from my full time job to work on AfterGlobe.
Sometimes, Drew’s job site isn’t always convent to drive me to work, so he drops me off at the transit center near our house and I take the train to work, instead. It’s super easy, I get a short morning walk in and he picks me up after work. Even doing this, we still save over $200 per month just on gas alone.
Carpooling doesn’t just stop at getting to and from work, either. You can also carpool with friends when going somewhere. Not only does is save money, but it gives you more time with friends and helps the environment.
You save a ton of money by staying home. You don’t spend any money out doing things, you don’t spend money eating out and you save on the gas to get to those places. That’s 3 wins towards having more money to pay off your debt quicker. We are lucky; we really enjoy each others company and our home, so this is something that’s pretty easy for us. Plus, it gives us more time to work on our house to get it into even better shape to sell.
Since you aren’t going out much anymore, invite your friends over for a potluck. Even when trying to become debt free and live on a budget, we still want to see our friends. Having parties are expensive. Trust us, we know. We use to have a lot of them. Instead, make one dish and provide a couple mixers. Ask your friends to each bring a dish and any alcoholic beverage they would like. It’s a cheap night with friends and a ton of fun. We’ve started doing these once per month and love them so much we now look forward to each one.
Explore the World Around You for Free
Ask yourself, what do you have around you that you can do for free? We’ve got an easy neighborhood for walks and bike rides, tons of hiking, visits down to the rivers, swimming, days at the parks and so much more. All of it is free. All of it is close to our house so we can walk, ride our bikes or drive a short distance to them. This is also a great way to stay in shape if you get rid of your gym memberships, like we did. Make sure to pack some food and drink to take with you to save even more money.
Sell Your Crap
We mean stuff. Sell your stuff. If you are anything like us, you have way too much stuff in your house. Stuff you probably don’t need. Stuff you probably don’t even use. Stuff that can bring in some extra funds to get out of debt quicker.
We started gathering up items last week to sell. We already have tiki mugs, Fiestaware, Melmac and so much more in our for sale pile. We will be adding more to the pile this week. Friends will be coming over to see if there’s anything they are interested in before we open up an online store to sell our items. Additional items will be listed on Craigslist and a garage sale will be held. Whatever is left over will be donated resulting in a tax write-off for next year.
Get a Side Job
Get a side job. No one wants to work more than 40 hours a week. In fact, most of us probably want to work less than that. However, if you want to get out of debt quicker, one of the fastest ways to do this is to get a side job.
My side job has become AfterGlobe and selling all of our stuff. As well as, staying on top of our budget and making our meal plans. I’m also working on a way to do some freelance work from home. It’s a good thing we are staying home more, because all of this is hard work and takes time to stay on top of all of it.
Drew, on the other hand, has taken on a more traditional approach to side jobs. He’s been picking up extra work in construction, window replacement, yard work and home repair. Need to hire him for a weekend or after work job? He’s available! All funds he earns on the side goes directly towards us getting out of debt quicker. Just think, you’d be helping us get out of debt even quicker and towards our dream to travel the world, that much sooner.
What one tip has been the biggest help to you towards becoming debt free from our Financial Tips to Get Out of Debt Quicker?