5 Tips for Managing Holiday Debt
After the holiday celebrations, many people end up with more debt than they would like. January is a good time to think about ways to manage debt and make resolutions to achieve financial stability.
1. Develop a budget. The first step toward taking control of your financial situation is to do a realistic assessment of how much money you take in and how
2. Assess your debt. After you've established your budget, you'll be prepared to start paying down your existing debt. When reducing your debt, always continue to make your payments on time. Try to pay more than the minimum due. Generally, it is a good idea to pay off debt with highest interest rates first.
3. Contact your creditors. Contact your creditors immediately if you're having trouble making ends meet. Tell them why it's difficult for you, and try to work out a modified payment plan that reduces your payments to a more manageable level. Don't wait until your accounts have been turned over to a debt collector. At that point, your creditors have given up on you.
4. Find free fun. Use the month of January to get your budget back on track. Plan to only spend money on necessities, and then commit to finding opportunities for free family fun. Plan a family game night, or check out books and movies from your local library. Your family might also enjoy preparing dinner together or volunteering for a local charity. If you enjoy outdoor fun, winter provides plenty of opportunities for sledding or building a snowman. Use your imagination, and the savings will add up!