3 Really Good Posts to Help You Reduce Spending & DebtJan 16, 2019
January can bring a mix of emotions. On the one hand, there are new opportunities and feelings of excitement for the year ahead. On the other hand, you may be feeling anxiety about the current state of your finances — or even some regrets about those post-holiday credit card bills.
Here are three great blog posts that can help you stay excited about your financial future and help you reduce spending and debt.
1. Look both ways
It’s great (and important) to have financial goals for your future. But don’t forget to look behind you, too.
Chances are, you did some things right in 2018. Take the time to review how you managed your finances, and what your spending behaviours were like. You’ll likely see some themes emerge — times when you could tell you were more apt to overspend, and times when it was easier to budget or save.
Check out Patti Lovett-Reid’s blog post on how changing interest rates and new beginnings affect finances.
Lovett-Reid suggests looking at the previous year and deciding what you want to do the same, not just what you want to change.
If reducing your debt and your spending in general is a goal for you and your family, you should consider what you want to stay the same.
What are your can’t-live-withouts? Having two vehicles? Family pizza and movie night once a week? Kids’ recreational activities? Hosting Sunday brunch for family?
Then, consider what you can do to preserve those things by reducing spending elsewhere. As interest rates rise, non-essential spending has to be reduced, otherwise you’ll take on debt.
Finding the best way to accommodate higher interest rates and your must-haves is going to be unique to you and your family.
2. Find an app that works with you
If you’re living in the tech age, you may as well embrace it.
There are a lot of apps that can help you track your spending, and because they’re on your phone or mobile device, it’s super simple. No remembering what you did during the day, or being too tired to track your spending at night.
This post from the YMC blog can help you sort through the pros and cons of all the app options out there.
The old adage, “what you measure matters, and what matters gets measured” holds true in finances. If reducing or avoiding debt is important to you, tracking your consumer spending is a sure-fire way to keep your goals in mind and achieve them.
Reducing debt and helping your finances flourish (even with changing life events and increasing interest rates) is possible, but it takes time. Settle in to some new habits, like working with your tracking app, and you’ll see results.
3. Do the little things
Reviewing your financial habits and goals, and finding the right method to track your spending are only part of the equation.
To really reduce or help yourself avoid debt, you’ll have to do a lot of little things.
This list of 30 little ways to save money from YMC is a great way to brainstorm what will work for you.
But this isn’t your typical list that covers only your day-to-day behaviour and spending, like buying your lunch each day instead of packing it. The suggestions are varied, and include reviewing your insurance, your warranties, deductibles, changing your consumption habits, and selling some of your stuff can quickly have you on your way to a smaller debt load.
You’ll be able to track how you spend your money a lot easier if you’re reducing the number of ways you’re spending in general.
Keep your new year’s motivation going by tracking your spending from the get-go. You’ll help your finances by reducing your debt and keep them more secure by creating financial wiggle-room as interest rates change.
How do you track your spending? Tell us on Twitter. #LeaveDebtBehind #DebtSolutions #NewYearMotivation