Sophie did what any good Consumerist struggling with credit card debt would do. She called up her lender, American Express, and asked if they would be able to help her with some kind of payment plan before she missed any payments. knows that some credit card companies are currently happy to negotiate when struggling customers call them up, since a customer making lower payments is better than a customer missing payments, or not making any payments at all. Right?
One thing that can derail people digging themselves out of debt are the random unexpected setbacks life likes to throw at us to keep us on our toes. The accidental parking ticket, the bike that breaks down, the illness that requires pricey pills. Any of these can be enough to upset even the most carefully orchestrated budgeting and debt payment schedule, unless, you are smart like Ramit Sethi, and set up a “stupid mistakes” sub-savings account. Here’s how it works.
This 30-year old receptionist and single mother of 3 climbed out of a $50,000 debt hole in 5 years using these 10 steps.
Are you smarter than a credit card? You’re not if you’re not paying off more than what the credit card company requires you to each month.
Whether you’re trying to get out, or stay out, of debt, these five posts are a good way to get inspired to stick with your goals:
- Reader Pays Off $14,330 In 20 Months With Our Tips
- How I Talk Myself Out Of Buying Stuff
- How To Get Out Of Debt
- Paying Cash-Only, Family Spends $1,800 Less
- How To Go 30 Years Without A Credit Card
Our post on freezing your credit cards in a block of ice got me thinking. Anything that slows, stops, or impedes making transactions can be used as a technique for limiting your spending. Whatever it may be, cutting up your credit cards, locking up most of your money in an account it takes 3 days to transfer from, giving yourself an allowance, it will be a variation on a single principle: It’s easier to put a hard limit on the future then to make the right decision in the impulsive moment. Installing some kind of an automatic hiccup can help break you out of your desire-driven action and give you the breathing room to step back and make the right choice. So if you have trouble with overspending (or overeating or any kind of bad habit) and your sheer willpower is sometimes lacking, aka, you’re human, try brainstorming ways you can trip yourself up. The world is full of obstacles, it shouldn’t be too hard to find one.