I mentioned in my inaugural post that I’m in debt. I didn’t say how much, but I’ll come clean….its nearly $45K (not counting my house). Seriously–a ridiculous amount, especially when I make plenty for my needs. I’ve just not made being a good steward of my financial resources a priority.
One of my big “turn-my-life-around” goals is to get a handle on this, pay it off, save for emergencies and for retirement.
I’ve done a lot of research about different methods for approaching this situation. I’ve taken Financial Peace University by Dave Ramsey a few times, but never made it a priority. I am recommitting. I already have Baby Step 1 conquered (savings of $1K). However, I have still been using my credit cards. I know myself. I know that it takes me time to really commit to something, so I’m not going to beat myself up about this. So here’s the plan:
- I didn’t set up a November budget. This weekend I’ll go through my account and get a budget for the rest of the month completed.
- I will go through all of my auto payments that are coming out of credit card and get them switched over to my debit card.
- I have already set up an amortization schedule for all of my debt that includes information on the interest and set up an anticipated pay-off plan. If I pay minimums with an additional $200 per month, I can have this debt paid off in 3 years and 1 month.
- I will start to identify areas where I can trim the budget and put more funds towards payment of debt so I can hopefully pay it off sooner.
I am really excited to move this up the priority chain. I’m meeting with a retirement counselor tomorrow–not with the anticipation of retiring soon, but with the anticipation of seeing what my retirement picture looks like right now in order to make a plan so that when my debts are paid off I can start saving more for retirement.
Do you have any great strategies for saving money? What are your biggest struggles surrounding money, debt or savings?