HOPE for a Debt-Free Life!Part 1 By Michelle Black

Does the mere mention of “debt” make your blood pressure spike a little? Do you begin to mentally kick yourself when you think about the amount you owe to creditors on a monthly basis? Is the stress of having more bills than money causing you to be unhappy or, even worse, causing tension within your entire family?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above then I am very excited to be sharing some great debt-payoff-tips with you over the next few weeks. The good news I would like to begin with is that, no matter what your current debt situation looks like, there is a way to turn it around. At the HOPE Program one of our favorite phrases is “There’s no such thing as a HOPEless situation!” There is so much truth in that powerful statement. If you could just take that single statement to heart and know that, with a little hard work and a solid plan, you can turn your financial and credit situation around, it would offer you a tremendous amount of stress relief!

Are you ready to hear some more? Then let’s get started with tip #1:

Track Your Spending.

My next tip is going to involve setting up a workable budget for your household. However, before a workable budget can be properly established you must have a clear idea of where your money is going currently. The easiest way I have found to track your spending is to carry a 3X5 card in your purse or wallet for a period of 4 weeks. Every time you spend any money (cash, charge, or check) be sure to write down the location of the purchase and the amount of the purchase on your 3X5 card. Remember to spend normally during this 4 week period. You will want an accurate picture of your spending habits when you get ready to plan your monthly budget.

Check back soon for my next tip to help you move closer to your debt free lifestyle!