STEP 3: CONTROL SPENDING
As discussed in Step 2: Revitalize, Control Spending is the next step. A healthy budget will typically have an expense-to-income ratio that is less than 90%.
This means that from all of the money that you make at least 10% of your income each month is “left over” for you to do with whatever you want, such as SAVE or SHOP or just control spending.
If you don’t have something left over for you, then you should probably call us.
MODIFYING THE BUDGET
There are several key points to remember while trying to control spending and what to make spending changes on.
First, your secured items (home loans, cars are secured) are unlikely to be easily adjusted. Mortgage payments, automobile payments, etc. have established payment terms that don’t typically change.
- Likewise, the minimum payments required on your unsecured expenses (credit cards, gas cards and personal loans) could be the same monthly.
- Therefore, let’s focus on your other living expenses in order to control spending.
- Most items on the living expenses section of the budget can be reduced and some can even be eliminated. If you have little or no left over income, you should attempt to control spending for non essentials.
- It’s also a good idea to look for programs where free or reduced cost services are available. Free food, reduced cost internet are two social services some are eligible to receive to control spending.
- It’s always the first action to take when facing financial difficulties to look at what is essential and the consequences of what, if you control spending on that item, you win.
- CUT CUT CUT If some items that are considered luxuries such as magazines, beauty supplies, entertainment, clothing, cable, streaming services, multiple mobile phones were eliminated from the budget wouldn’t have the same effect as not paying your car (repo) or home / rent (eviction) .
- Take a hard look at what is necessary and unnecessary. Keep in mind you must control spending to be effective.
- The next step is to adjust your budget based upon the expenses you will be reducing. If you used the CCMS budget worksheet, simply enter the items you will be reducing.
Hey, call us if you need to, controlling spending what we’re here for. 1(800)920-2262
REDUCING UNSECURED EXPENSES
There are several ways to reduce your unsecured expenses (credit card bills). The following options may be available to you depending upon a few things.
Home Equity Loans and Second Mortgages Home equity lines of credit and second mortgages are an option for those with above-average credit history.
- These loans may allow you to pay off your higher interest cards and consolidate your bills at a lower annual percentage rate; however, they require your home as collateral.
- It is not advisable to accept these types of credit if you have little left over income and are having difficulties paying your monthly obligations because late payments or missed payments can put your home in jeopardy.
Balance Transfers If the current annual percentage rate on your accounts are preventing you from paying down your credit card bills, then a balance transfer may be an effective means of consolidating your credit card bills and reducing your finance charges.
- However, balance transfers should be used sparingly and should not be treated as a permanent fix.
- Most creditors will reduce your annual percentage rate for a short, finite period of time after transferring balances (typically 6-12 months).
- After the period of low interest has expired your annual percentage rate may return to its normal level (some 27% or more).
- Therefore, it is not advisable to transfer balances if you have little left over income and are unable to make significantly high payments during the months following the transfer.
Non-Profit Management Plans A nonprofit management plan is a viable option if you have little left over income, high interest rates or are currently behind on your credit card payments.
- Most creditors are willing to lower both your monthly payments and interest, suspend late and over limit fees and provide you with a fresh start on paying off your accounts through such a plan.
- A Nonprofit Management Plan is effective for those consumers that show reasonable financial need.
- If you are currently struggling to pay your bills or are unable to make a dent on your high interest balances, then you should examine this alternative. We offer these plans here at DebtHelper.
After reviewing your options and determining the best course of action to fit your needs, it is now time to act.
Financial hardship cannot be cured by watching.
- You need to take action and control your path. If you are having difficulties making payments, have very little or no left over income or have high interest accounts, then it is important to know your options and take action.
- More importantly, however, is that you use this knowledge to make improvements to your financial well-being.
- The previous tutorial should be used as an introduction into exploring your financial options and improving your financial health. This tutorial should not be used as a substitute for professional counseling and assistance.
- If you have any questions regarding your financial situation please contact CCMS at (800) 920-2262.
- A counselor will review your current financial situation, answer your questions and provide you with a Simple course of action to help your situation.
- All counseling sessions and personal information are kept strictly confidential.
We don’t want you to be in debt any more than you do. Call us today (800)920-2262