Pay Off Your Debt - Debt Management Tips

October Edition - Financial Freedom

"A day will never be more than you make of it." Josh Hinds

If your day consists of doing the same things you did yesterday, last month, and last year financially, and you are no farther ahead than you were, then, do something different.

Congratulations to one of our readers. She made a bold move recently and started her own business. She did something different.

Do something different and prepare your own Net Worth Statement. Yes, according CNN/Money, "It's hard to figure out how to get somewhere if you don't know where you are." Regardless of whether your financial net worth is negative or in the positive, it is where you need to start building from that point on. Net worth means that you have calculate all of your expenses (liabilities), and subtract those dollar amounts from your assets (things of value including savings, retirement, houses and car values, etc). The sum is your net worth or owner's equity. Although, unless you need to for insurance purposes, you may not want to include jewels and furs. Forms are easily available if you need them.

The average net worth by age is about $900 for 25 year olds and under; $15,000 for 25 to 34 year olds; $95,250 for 35 to 44 year olds; and $163,334 for 45 to 54 year olds. (source: CNN/Money - pre economic downturn)

The average net worth by income is: Under $25K (x 1000) is $12,500; $25K-$50K is $75,000; and $50K-$75K is $168,450.

Do something different and prepare your own budget. Calculate all of your income from all of your sources, and all of your expenses from food, clothing and shelter, to mortgages, insurances, and car notes, etc. Use available free software to do this. The software will encourage zealous attention to detail. The results will give you suggestions on what percentage of your income you should be devoting to certain categories like insurance, savings and investments, and general living expenses. I ran the free software from Money Magazine's web-site and discovered that I was spending 10% more on insurance than I should, and like most people I was investing about 17% less on savings than they suggest.

Budget calculator link: http://cgi.money.cnn.com/tools/budget101/budget_101.jsp

Using these software tolls may take a little time, but considering that most people spend more time planning a vacation, the time spent will be worthwhile.

Creating Extra Money Tip of the Month - Use debt elimination software to calculate how much you should pay on each credit card (bill) each month and systematically eliminate everything from the high interest "bad debt" to the lower interest rate debt in a very short period of time while using the same amount of money you now spend each month on those same bills.

What's left? Lots and lots of cash.

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