Managing debt can be daunting for anyone. But the fact is, with a little effort, you can turn your financial life around using these budgeting tips you may not have thought of before.
- Keep Your Goals in Front of You — Write your financial goals or tape a photo of your goal (maybe a house, car or vacation) on the back of a business card and stick it to your credit card. Every time you pull out that card you’ll be reminded of your goals before you spend — and maybe the budget planner in you will decide not to use it quite so much.
- Reduce Just 5% Less — In most cases, your car payments, rent or mortgage are fixed and can’t be reduced. But there are plenty of “variable expenses” in your budget too — movie tickets, dinners out, that pair of shoes you had to have. Reduce your variable expenses by just 5%. That’s not much at all. If you used to spend $100 a month going to the movies, you’d only need to lower that to $95! The savings add up quickly if you do this across spending categories. Once you get used to that level of spending, try to reduce it by another 5%.
- Change Your Financial Outlook — Did you know that if you put aside 50 cents a day you can save nearly $200 in 12 months? If everyone in the family adds their extra coins to the jar that amount can double, triple, or even quadruple — the bigger your family, the more you can save! Start by just emptying the change from your pants or pocketbook at the end of the day. All that loose pocket change from broken dollars adds up fast, and it’s one budgeting tip that can easily fit into any budget planner.
- Make Biweekly Mortgage Payments — Making biweekly mortgage payments is a good way to be more financially responsible. It pays off in savings and financial security by reducing the total amount of interest you pay on your loan and speeding up the time to debt freedom. Instead of paying your home mortgage once a month, you make half of your monthly mortgage payment every other week. By doing this, you make 13 payments each year instead of 12. It really adds up. For example: If you have a 30-year mortgage for $272,000 at 4.5%, making biweekly payments can save you more than $37,000 and pay off your house 53 months sooner. This strategy can even be applied to other kinds of debts, such as auto loans and large credit-card debt, multiplying your savings and speeding up loan payoffs.
Find out more about how biweekly payments can pay off debt, and see more budgeting advice at autopayplus.com. AutoPayPlus can help you pay down debt faster. Withdrawals from your account every other week fit conveniently with paychecks and your monthly budget, while an extra half-payment twice a year toward the principal reduces interest over the lifespan of the loan. Please visit our website to learn more.