The Debt Problem: Your Financial Worries, and How to Fix Them

Everyone worries. Even the most optimistic person has worries — most likely that people think they’re too optimistic. If not careful, these worries can fill people’s heads, leaving little space to figure out how to correct their ongoing issues. You also have worries — mostly in the financial category. With a young family which seems to need more every week, your worries morph into apocalyptic scenarios where you’re all out on the street, or the bank is hammering a Foreclosure sign on your home, or one of your children needs emergency surgery or dental work. And when you review your checking account, you worry how you’ll ever get out of the mess you made when you started said young family, as now you’re in a bundle of debt.

This much worry is not going to get you anywhere if it’s not coupled with some constructive thinking on how to resolve the issues. Here are a few suggestions on ways to calm your brain.

How do I not carry my debt into the next generation?

This is a simple two-part answer. First, stop spending like you have a money tree farm in your back yard. Second, build yourself a budget. This list of income and expenses can tell you how much you have and how much is owed.

How can I pay off all of my debts?

We’ve mentioned it before, but it bears repeating. List all of your debts on a piece of paper. Start with the smallest and work your way up. With any extra money you have, pay off the smallest debt. Take that saved money and put it towards the next debt, and so on. Soon enough, you’ll have most of your list eliminated.

How can I reduce my credit card debt?

Well, not using them is the first step. In fact, it’s best thing to do is call the credit card companies to cancel them, followed by the ritual of grabbing a pair of scissors and cutting them into small pieces. There is nothing so important to purchase that it requires paying for it with money you don’t have so you can pay a higher amount later.

How can I pay for my children’s college education?

First, there’s no rule which says you’re obligated to flip the bill for your child’s college education. Yes, as a parent you can assist, but this doesn’t mean, once their of working age, your children can’t save money on their own. Still, you can start 529 accounts for your children and add any available funds to them until they reach minimum age. However, don’t do this until you’ve paid off your debt. The lack of payments frees up additional monies to be applied to the college funds.

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