Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Money Saving Ideas

I remember when I was eager to get out of debt and save money. I was so hungry for any tips that would help me and motivate me. Unfortunately there is a lot of stuff out there you have to weed through to get to the real tips that you can actually use.

Money Saving Ideas to Get you Out of Debt or increase your savings:

Make a budget - I know I know, everyone says this but it couldn't be more true. Pay everything in list of priority – pay shelter, utilities, food, transportation (PUFT) and first. Then work your way down the list of who gets paid until you are out of money for that month. Pay people in this order:

· Shelter, utilities, food, transportation
· 2nd mortgages/HELOCs
· credit cards

Increase your income - take a second job, part time job, get a better job. This is only temporarily.

Sell stuff on eBay – Since you have plenty of time on your hands because you won’t be eating out or going to the movies, etc. collect all the stuff in your house that you don’t use that is taking up space, plus you have to dust it. Recoup some of the money you spent on frivolous stuff and throw it towards debt or savings.

Have yard sales.

Loose the cable/satellite

– you know that you are losing brains cells by sitting in front of the tv for hours at a time don’t you?

Cut back on extras – No Starbucks Caramel Frappicinos. No new red shoes. No filet mignon. Remember this is only temporary until you can get your bearings. That stuff will always be there.

Ditch anything that is not in PUFT – Blockbuster/Netflicks movie rental – you can borrow movies for free from the library, piano lessons, etc.

Freecycle for what you need – Sign up for your area’s Freecycle and post what you need and someone will have it and email you to come pick it up. You can read about my recent success story here. Stuff that you think you cannot sell on Ebay post onto Freecycle so it does not end up in a landfill.

Collect all of your bills and call each company to get a better rate – again you have time on your hands since you are in lock down from yourself and your bad spending habits. Spend this time calling each company and get them to lower your rates to the very best rate they can offer – this includes your cell phone, insurance (life & car), credit cards, power company (see my post here about how to do this). Every company you deal with wants to keep you as their customer and not loose your business. Use this to your advantage.

With a few major and minor adjustments you can get yourself out of debt or increase your savings. Sure it will be difficult. Sure it might not be much fun.

But just as you teach your children that they must suffer the consequences when they make a bad choice the shouldn't the same be for you?

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