How To Clear Your Debt Once And For All!

Hello Loves!

This has been a post I have been meaning to write for a little while now but I just never got around to doing it! Now, I have been struggling with credit card debt for about 3 years. My debt isn't a heart stopping amount however it was a couple of thousand and definitely more than what I could afford especially since I would pay off a little here and there and then have maxed them again by the end of the month! I have two credit cards and both will be fully paid off by the end of October, I thought its about time I share with you the steps I took in order to clear my debts.

1. Live Within Your Means
I feel as though this is something that most of us struggle with even more so now, with social media portraying a certain kind of lifestyle. I was the worst for living outside of my means. I didn't even know my means. I saw something I wanted and I'd whip out the credit card and spend away. I found learning my means was incredibly challenging but once I got to grips with it, the easier it became.

2. Delete Shopping Apps/Unsubscribe from mailing lists
This tip is super important especially if you love to shop online. I got to a point where I would get bored on almost a daily basis and would resort to online shopping for entertainment. I am only a supervisor for a news agents so my wage is minuscule, even more so now I am on maternity leave. Once the apps were gone from my phone and the sale notifications were out of my inbox I found myself thinking less about online shopping as it wasn't in my face anymore.

3. Set A Budget And Allocate A Reasonable Allowance
I know that this one seems almost as if you are a child getting pocket money again but it really does work. Set yourself a reasonable amount of disposable income per month and withdraw it in CASH! I set myself £200 per month so £50 a week and would have that money in my purse for whatever I wanted. If I had money left over I would take that away from my next months allowance and pay more off of my debt. e.g. I had £50 left over I would only withdraw £150 on payday.

4. Stop Making Unnecessary Purchases
This one seems like the most obvious but it really isn't. Go though your bank statements and look at how much you spend in places like Starbucks, Mcdonalds etc each month. The amount will shock you! You don't need to buy a £5 coffee, get a flask and make one at home. I know we all like a caramel macchiato but seriously, what would you prefer? The coffee that will last 5 minutes or to be debt free? 

5. Account For EVERY Penny!
This is the most important tip that I have and the one that has made my debt decrease so quickly! I used to set myself a certain amount to pay off my credit cards leaving money in my bank that I would just spend. What you need to do is write a list of ALL your expenses the bills that will always need to be paid such as Rent. Then make a list for subscriptions e.g. Do you really need Amazon Prime? Can you switch to a cheaper Netflix? Once you have created this list subtract the amount from your wage and whatever you have left put ALL of it on your debts! 

*Bonus tip* If you have more than one credit card like me prioritise the one with the highest APR to prevent paying more than what you need to! Pay minimum payment on the lowest APR account and then put ALL of the left over money on the higher one to pay it off quicker therefore lessening your repayments. Below I am going to share with you a breakdown of my bills so you can clearly see the method behind the madness.

Monthly Income - £671 (maternity)

Car Insurance: £69.33
Car Tax: £12.25
Me: £40 
Blog Email: £5
Phone: £10
Lloyds Credit (27%APR): £15 (minimum payment)
Capital One (39%APR): £519

Edit* As a military family the US Air Force pay our rent hence no rent payment...I also no longer need the £200 allowance I only allocate myself the £40 for emergency purposes.

I know that this post was a slightly lengthy one however I hope these tips help you to rid yo'self of that dreaded debt. If you have any other tips you think might be helpful share them in the comments as they might further help someone else!


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