Tackle your debt

Tackle Your Debt

We all know that the first step to tackle your debt is to find out how much money you owe. So if you haven’t created an inventory of your debt, start with that. How much credit card debt do you have?

According to Credit Cards.com, the credit card debt per card-carrying adult is $5,839.

SPOILER ALERT…. the 2nd step is DO NOT INCUR MORE DEBT! Cut up your credit cards, freeze them in a Tupperware container of water so you can’t easily access them, give them to a trusted relative or friend or close your account.

Let’s start getting rid of your debt! There are several popular methods for tackling your debt.

Debt Snowball

The debt snowball is my favorite because its easy to understand and you see results quickly. The idea is to start with your smallest debt and pay as much as you can against it, while paying the minimum on your other debts.

In the example below, start with the Nordstrom debt since it has the smallest balance. You’ll continue to pay the minimum on the Macy’s and Chase accounts.

It will take a little over 3 months to pay off the Nordstrom and Macy’s credit cards when paying the minimum amount. If you have any extra money left over in your budget, put it towards the Nordstrom account. Even $10 or $20 will make a big difference in the time it will take to pay off this debt.

Once the Nordstrom bill is paid off you will add the $38 minimum payment to the amount that you are paying to Macy’s.

Once you pay off Macy’s, then you can put the $28 you were paying to Macy’s and the $38 you were paying to Nordstrom all toward Chase. So your monthly payment to Chase is $101 ($35 minimum Chase payment + $28 Macy’s minimum payment + $38 Nordstrom payment). This method really let’s you make progress on your debts!

Here is a simplified example (no interest) of the debt snowball. Don’t forget that interest is still accruing on the unpaid balance on your credit card bills. So it will take longer to pay off.

Debt snowball example

Debt Snowball – By Interest Rate

Another version of the debt snowball is to tackle the debt with the highest interest rate first. In that case, we would tackle the Macy’s card first since it has the highest interest rate and then the Nordstrom card and last the Chase card. You would continue to pay the minimum payment on all cards, but put anything extra to the Macy’s card first.

Micro Payments

You can do this in conjunction with the Debt Snowball. Basically, whenever you have extra money, send it to the credit card company. According to thebalance.com, ” Even If all you can find is an extra $2.74 per day to pay on your cards, that’s still a whopping $1,000 per year taken off your credit card debt balances.”

So look for extra money, skip the latte, sell some things that you aren’t using, pick up extra hours at work or start a side hustle. Put this extra money toward your debt.

You can tackle your debt! Just follow these simple guidelines:

  1. Inventory your debt.
  2. Do not incur any new debt.
  3. Begin using the snowball method to pay off your debt.
  4. Put any extra money toward your debt.
  5. Track your progress. Keep a tracker on your refrigerator and watch the balance go down.

You’ve got this. Let me know how it’s going!

Blue Skies

Connie

16 thoughts on “Tackle Your Debt”

  1. Snowballs are so helpful in keeping me motivated! I’m currently at the point of trying not to incur more debt. Daycare costs are sinking me but I’m hoping to start my pay down soon ☺️ great tips!

  2. The frozen credit card reminds me of the movie Shopaholic But this is so helpful! I got really cocky with my credit card. I had a balance of $300 and somehow I tripled it. I thought I would be able to pay it off immediately, but life happens. I like the fridge idea. I’m such a visual person; this will keep me motivated! Great post

  3. You are quite correct that you must know how much you owe and then get rid of it. We used everything we had to pay off debt so we didn’t have any savings but we didn’t owe anything either. Credit cards can be a great friend or an enemy. Use them right and get lots of rewards or use them wrong and have huge debt.

  4. Debt is a big factor that I want to tackle. Seeing this post will help me in writing everything down collectively to keep everything in one place. Will be pinning for later ❤️

  5. All I have left for debt are student loans and my car! I can’t wait to be debt free! The debt snowball is an amazing process and really does work!

  6. Love, love, love your idea of putting any extra money toward paying off your debt! This allows you not to ” feel” the loss of the money since you were never expecting the money in the first place. Great tip!

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