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Use A Debt Checklist To Examine Where You Are


A Debt Checklist allows you to look at items and areas of your financial life. You need toexamine these to gauge how you stand. Even if you believe you are in good shape take a closelook at these areas to be sure.

  • Your Budget. Almost nobody likes this word, which is why so many peoplehave problems with their finances and debt. You need to know how and where your money isbeing spent. In addition, you should be sticking to a spending plan.

  • Your Savings Account. You should pay yourself each month. To do thisyou need have an account in place, in which you keep your funds. At least until you can movethem to an account with a higher rate of return. Visit your bank or credit union to set one up.

  • Your Use Of Credit. You need to review your use of credit to see how,what, and where you are using it. Using credit to pay your bills or buying groceries is a recipe fortrouble.

  • Your Percentage Of Income For Debt. Nothing makes it harder to staywith your spending plan than credit card payments. You are paying for your past while trying topurchase your present. If your percentage of income going toward debt exceeds 15 you could beheaded for trouble. Any amount over 20 percent, you need to put on the brakes.

  • Your Minimum Payments. These add up. If you are to the point where youca only make minimum payments on your debts, you will stretch your indebtedness far into thefuture. You don't want to extended like this. Find ways to add extra to one payment eachmonth. Then when you pay one off move the extra payments to another.

  • Your Protection. You need to put into place and maintain protection foryour assets. Your home, autos, life, and health, need be insured. Make certain the protection isin line with the value of your assets and the needs of the people whose lives would be effected.

  • Your Retirement. Two factors come into play here. You are going to livelonger and life is not getting any cheaper. You should pay into an account for retirement everymonth. More is better. If you have been paying attention you'll know not to depend solely onsocial security.

  • Your Job Skills. Things change and change rapidly. A constant updateshould be part of your plan. You need to be able to obtain better jobs, or sometimes any job. Themore skills you possess the better your chances.

  • Your Money Skills. Since money education is not taught in school you willneed to learn on your own. You need to learn to manage your money, even if you turn it over toothers. Become familiar with how credit and debt works, so it doesn't work against you.

Once you have taken this inventory get to work shoring up the areas where you are weakest. Putinto place the ones you don't have. Then check back every so often to make sure all is well andas it should be.

(C) 2004 David Wilding.

David Wilding has for the past ten years worked with groups and individuals to help them reachthe goal of being debt free. Visit his web site http://www.debtattack.com for more ideas, tools,and strategies.


MORE RESOURCES:

Debt Releif - Google News

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