Learn more about the different options available to help you become debt-free.
Find out what debt consolidation means and how it can help you lower your monthly payments.
Consumer credit counseling, a form of debt management, is ideal for those that don't qualify for a loan but still want a lower rate. Get more information here.
Read what you need to know about this alternative to bankruptcy. Cut your payments and find a plan that fits your monthly budget.
Thinking about making a fresh start? Discover everything you need to know about the different types of personal bankruptcy and small business bankruptcy.
7 Ways to Avoid Getting Into Debt
If you're worried about falling into debt, there are simple steps you can take to avoid it. These steps are easy to follow because they are common sense strategies that will likely save you money in the long term.
- Create a budget. Make note of your expenses and your income and find ways in which you can lower costs. Dining in and renting movies online may be more cost effective than going to a restaurant and the theater. By making a budget, you can better track how much money is coming in and what you're spending it on.
- Consider working part-time. Even if you aren't in immediate need for cash, if you have the time and the ability to take on part-time work, you can save that money to start an emergency fund, so you aren't borrowing from your retirement accounts or charging up your credit cards.
- Save money. Even if it's pocket change, those pennies, nickles, and dimes will add up. If you save with a goal in mind, you might find yourself exceeding the dollar amount you've set for a vacation or other reward.
- Don't use your retirement funds. Just don't do it. The reason they're called your retirement savings is that they're for your retirement only. When the time comes for you to stop working, you don't want to go into debt to finance your golden years. Consider your 401(k) and Roth IRA to be off limits.
- Limit the number of credit cards you have. If you already have a large number of credit cards active, don't close them just stop using them. Pay them off and keep them in a safe place where you won't be tempted to carry them with you. Savers have done everything from cutting them up (without cancelling them – doing that could negatively affect your credit score) to filling freezer bags with water and literally putting those credit cards on ice.
- Do it yourself wherever possible. Think of all of the services and products you pay for - can you do or make any of it yourself? There's a do-it-yourself (DIY) website, magazine, or instructional video for anything and everything. You can find inspiration, tips and tricks on sites like Pinterest and YouTube. Learn how to do your own home repairs, fix your car, and make your own cleaning supplies, gifts, home decorations, and so much more!
- Limit your housing expenses. If you are looking to buy a new home, don't be tempted to purchase a house larger than you need. The same holds true for an apartment. Ask yourself if you really need to live in a luxury rental community or if you need a four-car garage and in-ground swimming pool. Also, keep in mind that with the price of the home or apartment, you also need to be able to afford the insurance needed for either one. In addition, if you are looking at a new home with a pool and a yard, there is the cost of maintenance to consider.
AmOne has over 15 years of experience helping people find the resources and the financial solutions they need to become debt-free. In a matter of minutes, AmOne's free service matches you with the highly rated debt consolidation loan providers, debt management firms, and debt settlement companies available. Our have financial search specialists are available to help you learn more about your options and to work with you to find the best way to eliminate your debt. Just answer some short questions on our debt solutions form or call us toll-free at 1-800-781-5187 to speak with one of our experienced financial search specialists. AmOne's offices are open Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM and on Saturday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.