Have you ever had a neighbor dig out an area for their new in-ground pool? Unless they really wanted a workout with a shovel, they most likely rented one of those mini excavators to dig out that big hole. Even with one of those excavators though, there is still quite a process to clear out all of that dirt. And, quite obviously, you need to get that hole dug before you can enjoy that cool relaxing dip in the pool! I like to think that your personal finances are the same way. Before you can enjoy a lump sum of cash in your bank account, you must first dig out that debt!
What Debt Do You Need to Dig Out?
While I cringe at the thought of any debt, some debts are definitely worse to hang onto that others. The first debt you want to get rid of is the highest interest bearing. If you owe money on a payday loan, this is most likely the first one you need to tend to. Next would be the credit cards, then student loans, and then the car loan.
How Do You Get Started?
Getting a bit of money to pay down the debts is actually quite simple. Sell everything you can. When my wife and I were newly weds and had absolutely no money, we decided that it was time to sell all our unnecessary possessions and pay off our debts.
You know what we got rid of? The TV, the surround sound, lawn chairs, my PS2, bookshelves, DVDs. Basically anything of value that we wouldn’t die without. Believe me, you will not die without a television. We actually still haven’t purchased one and we’ve been debt free for over a year and a half!
When you sell all of that stuff, all you have to do is put the money toward the loan with the largest interest percent. And, when you pay off that loan, you take that normal payment and put it toward one of your other debts.
What If Your Minimum Payments Are More Than Your Income?
If your debt payments total to more than what you could possibly pay, you are obviously in a dire situation. If this is what you are facing, it’s time to not only sell everything you can, but you also need to find some more income! Take a look at one of my latest publications: 101 Ways to Make More Money. In this book, you’ll learn some quick, simple ways to bring in some more dollars. By adding some income to your monthly total, you can hopefully start to pay down some of those debts!!
My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.