Hello everyone. As you could be noticed I have shared some guest post about various topics like prepping or the new land of opportunity. I have no intentions to turn this blog into the go-to place when you have to look for general financial wisdom, there are loads of other blogs which fulfill this mission much better than mine so I try to keep this (my) corner of the internet a funny place where geeky finance nerds can hang out (or at least that’s the plan).
The same time that does not mean that every now and then I could not publish some general wisdom about financial topics, especially when someone offers it on a silver plate 🙂 That was the case when a fellow blogger pinged me if I accept guests posts. Her topic is a little bit more serious but as someone who is seeing the effects of being in debt on loved ones, I found it important to take my part in helping to spread the word.
Nerd alert: there are links to some cute calculators! 😉
Nelly, the keyboard is yours.
Living debt free is everyone’s dream. But, is it always a feasible option? Probably not. We need to take out loans to have a better lifestyle. But it doesn’t mean that we’d have to continue with our debt payments throughout our life. We can still opt for a debt-free lifestyle.
What is it like to be debt free?
It requires no mention that being debt free is awesome. What are the other advantages?
You can save more of your hard-earned income
When you don’t have to make the interest payments, you can save more. And, what will you do with the savings? You can save for your retirement and achieve FIRE (Financial Independence and Retirement Early) at your desired time.
Even if you’re not saving for early retirement, you can at least use the money for your pleasure or invest for profitable returns in the future.
You can live a stress-free life
Life with debt is always stressful. Every time when you plan a budget or make some financial plan, you have to keep aside an amount to repay debts.
Once you don’t owe anything to others, you’re not much affected by the recession. If you have an emergency fund, you know that you can sustain for at least a few months even if your income decreases to some extent or there’s an inflation.
So, you have a higher quality of life.
You can get your desired lifestyle
The most annoying part of being in debt is that you have to pay for the expenses you made in the past. Once you start living a debt free lifestyle, you can use your money for the needs you have today and in the future.
It is a sense of empowerment since you can decide how much you need to allow for your present needs and wants and how much to keep to fulfill the needs of the future.
You can build a better financial future
When you make only the minimum payments on credit card debts, it creates an avalanche as unpaid balance gets added up every month. However, living a debt free life also helps to create an avalanche, but a positive one.
You can increase your savings and make investments with your paycheck, thus building a good financial future.
How can you achieve a debt-free lifestyle?
First of all, let me tell you that you’d have to work for that. But, it’s not that tough. Many people have been successful and you can achieve it too.
We have to choose a debt-free lifestyle and then gradually, it will become a habit. Once we start doing something consciously, it becomes a habit after a certain time.
Once you decide to live debt free and have a positive mindset, you don’t have to struggle hard as implementing the habits become relatively easier.
So, let’s find out how to implement the habit of living a life without debt. Here are a few debt-free living tips for you:
Understand and accept the challenges
Once you decide to live debt free and take the necessary steps, be prepared to hear that you are foolish and people will ask why you are taking such steps.
Be ready to accept the challenge. The road won’t be smooth. But, once your lifestyle choice becomes a habit, things will be easier for you and you’ll be motivated to attain your goal.
So, make yourself ready to accept the challenge of living a debt-free lifestyle.
Create a big gap between your income and expenditure
The prime aspect of paying back debt is to save more and more and use the amount to repay dues. The more you can widen the gap between your income and expenses, the faster you can embrace a life without debt bothering you.
So, what do you need to do?
Plan a budget and embrace frugality. That doesn’t mean you’d have to be a miser. But, use money as per your needs and not wants.
Try to avoid an inflated lifestyle
Expenses always increase because we try to imitate others’ lifestyle. Try to avoid that. Whenever you feel your expenses are increasing, remember your goal of being debt free. Develop the habit of not stretching your finances too much to please your peer group.
Instead of being pressurized to spend more, motivate your friends to try living a debt-free lifestyle.
Learn to say a ‘No’ whenever it’s needed
Saying ‘No’ is a bit difficult, especially when your close friends tell you something. However, make it clear that you’re living on a limited budget and they should encourage you to follow that.
If they’re real friends, they’ll help you to become debt free.
Plan long-term goals and assess periodically
You know where you’re heading to when you have a goal and work towards it. So, plan long-term goals and assess your progress periodically.
You may not be successful in your first attempt. But, developing the habit of making goals and planning strategies will surely make you attain your dreams.
Select a suitable debt-free strategy
Gather knowledge about suitable debt relief options and choose the best one for you. You can select from professional debt relief options along with DIY strategies to repay your unpaid balances.
If you want to have an idea whether or not your debts are within the manageable limit, you can check out with a debt-to-income ratio calculator available online.
And, if you are overburdened with debts, you can use a debt settlement calculator to find out how much you can save and how long it’ll take to get rid of your unsecured debts.
Whatever option you choose, first of all, cultivate a debt free mindset. Always think how life will be after you pay back every single cent, and don’t stop in your mission until you pay back the last cent.
Habits of people living a debt-free lifestyle
Here are the habits of people who lead a life without debt:
- They allow every dollar a task; the allotted dollar for savings is used for that purpose only.
- They do not pay heed to peer pressure; they’re always focused towards their monetary goals.
- They are always financially prepared for the unexpected expenses; they have their emergency fund ready to tackle such expenses.
- They set a limit beyond which they don’t charge their credit cards; if required, they repay a certain amount and then swipe the cards again.
Following all these tips and strategies, and by managing your finances properly, not only it’ll become a habit of living a debt-free life, but also you can be assured of living debt free in retirement, too.
So, embrace these habits and step into a better financial future.
Author Bio: Good Nelly is associated with DebtCC Community for a long time. She primarily writes financial articles in order to help others manage their finances and solve their monetary problems. Good Nelly has written articles for other websites too. Apart from writing, she loves to travel to new places.