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What's the single best tip you can give for all those in debt ?

edited 30 November -1 at 12:00AM in Debt-Free Wannabe
79 replies 16.7K views


  • mo1_2mo1_2 Forumite
    350 posts
    check to see if you have any charges on your bank accounts,credit cards or loans,and then reclaim them,i was drowning in charges untill someone told me to take back control of my money,some months ive only worked to pay charges,NOT ANY MORE i wont them all back...current score me 3 banks 0
  • ~evanesco~~evanesco~ Forumite
    814 posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts Combo Breaker

    and snowballs...

    Evans. xox
  • HairyHandofDartmoorHairyHandofDartmoor Forumite
    13K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    Keep sight of your long term goal, whatever that may be.

    I have a picture of my dream house in my cheque book and my purse, and every time I am about to buy something I don't need, the picture makes me change my mind!

    I will get that dream house, and not spending is going to get it for me!
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 😱 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017 :T 🎉
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £300/£5,000. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £10/£5,000.
    CHRISTMAS SAVINGS = £144.37/£500
  • Ali-OKAli-OK Forumite
    4.1K posts
    Part of the Furniture Debt-free and Proud!
    Lots of great tips. Mine would be see your SOA/first budget as the starting point and see it as a work in progress for the longer term.

    Use a new sheet for each month, comparing items and revisiting outgoings that you thought you needed in the beginning, because often mini-lightbulbs come on along the way and the frugal new you realises that something else can be cut or taken out. Frugal new you wants to cut it or take it out!

    Looking back to an SOA 3/6/12 months ago compared to now was a "wow" experience for me. Try it!
    Back on the DFW Wagon:

    CC - £3,300 on 0% til 04/2020
    CC - £4,500 on 0% til 02/2019
    Loan - £12,063.84 as at 4/1/18
  • tealadytealady Forumite
    3.5K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Mortgage-free Glee! Debt-free and Proud!
    Don't carry money unless you are going shopping for food or essentials. Then just take the minimal amount. Impulse buys are always my downfall so if I haven't got any money I can't spend it!
    Proud to be an MSE nerd
    Judge people by their achievements, not by their mistakes
  • Important update! We have recently reviewed and updated our Forum Rules and FAQs. Please take the time to familiarise yourself with the latest version.
  • irishmist_2irishmist_2 Forumite
    236 posts
    What a great thread!

    I would def agree with all those saying a spending diary and doing a SOA - they have really really helped, and feel loads more in control now.

    The other thing for me that's been really important is finding another focus - i'm training to do a charity cycle ride which is taking loads of time and I'm really enjoying it loads, and feel good about the fundraising- also it gives me a really great excuse socially (not many people know I'm in debt:rolleyes: ), so i can easily explain why I can't go out for drinks (or if I go drink very little) or why going away for weekends isn't possible at the moment - then people just start talking about the cycle and charity and stuff and don't hastle me at all to do stuff that i really can't afford (the down side is that my thighs are increasing a bit too rapidly for my liking!)

    Thanks :j
  • lynzpowerlynzpower Forumite
    25.3K posts
    10,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    simgle most important thing

    Work out the difference between want and need. Only buy what you want if you can justify it to the nth degree. ( anyone remember the patio furniture debacle? :rotfl: )
    :beer: Well aint funny how its the little things in life that mean the most? Not where you live, the car you drive or the price tag on your clothes.
    Theres no dollar sign on piece of mind
    This Ive come to know...
    So if you agree have a drink with me, raise your glasses for a toast :beer:
  • hypno06hypno06 Forumite
    32.3K posts
    10,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    Set small targets as well as big ones. So rather than saying "I am saving to buy a house" say "I am saving another £500". Far more achievable.

    So for me, instead of trying to focus on a very long distance debt free date, if I can set a target of reducing it by £10000 this year, or by doing one of the challenges on this board, I am more likely to stick to it, and to keep going.

    Baby steps.....
    Successful women can still have their feet on the ground. They just wear better shoes. (Maud Van de Venne)
    Life begins at the end of your comfort zone (Neale Donald Walsch)
  • Never let your yearnings exceed your earnings.
  • Total up everything you owe on a spreadsheet, new tab for each debt (detailing account numbers, amount owed, contact numbers, interest rates, monthly payment) Seeing it all in black and white is both sobering and a (strange) relief.
    Get a second job!
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