6 Ways To Relieve Yourself From Debt

It’s not easy to see your way out from under a mountain of debt. It’s discouraging, frightening and depressing. You might think there is no way you will ever find your way out of this mess, and it’s self-defeating to even try. Don’t lose hope! Even small steps can make a big difference, and if you stick with a plan, it can be a lot simpler than you think. Easy? No. But the end result is a debt-free life and is well worth the effort.

Here are six ways to relieve yourself from debt.

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A Loan in Shining Armor (and other stories)

In difficult economic times, most people are tightening their belts and restricting their spending to absolute essentials…that is of course, providing you consider a suit of armor an essential requirement.

When applying for a loan, the lender generally asks the reason for the finance, expecting to be told the money is for home improvements, a new auto or possibly to cover the cost of getting hitched.

In recent times, some people have asked their bankers to provide the collateral for them to undergo cosmetic surgery, with boob jobs and liposuction commonplace.

However it seems that not everyone opts to borrow money for such mundane purposes as a glimpse into the banking world has revealed a plethora of weird and wacky reasons for the request for cash.

Read moreA Loan in Shining Armor (and other stories)

Why Loans Aren’t Always Good Loans

In an ideal world we’d all have enough money so that we would never have to borrow money from anyone.

If you’re the sort of person who likes to eat, sleep and live, however – you’ll have noticed that this isn’t an ideal world, and life inevitably costs more than we earn.

So, (and you can probably see where I’m going with this) it occasionally becomes necessary to take out some sort of loan. In the interest of keeping costs down, it stands to reason that you would look for the cheapest loan.

Pump the brakes though, here’s why the cheapest loans aren’t necessarily the best or most appropriate loans for you.

Let’s talk about security

You need to think about whether your loan should be secured or unsecured. If you’re
unfamiliar with this terminology, here’s the basic difference:

Read moreWhy Loans Aren’t Always Good Loans

What, exactly, is a Debt Relief Order?

The following is a guest post from Debt Advisory Line.

The numbers of those in danger of defaulting on their debts have long reached worrying levels all across the UK. 13,653 people were declared bankrupt in England between July and September 2010. Faced with these troublesome developments, the UK government was forced into action. In April of 2009, it introduced Debt Relief Orders as a new procedure aimed at offering an alternative to bankruptcy. The move can certainly be considered a success: Today, debt relief orders are generally regarded as a powerful tool and have proven their efficacy. You, too, could benefit from them.

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Shop Around For Your Utilities To Save Cash

This is a guest post from MoneySuperMarket.com.
 
Many people pay their energy bills without giving a second thought to where that money is going. It may come as a big surprise to many that everyone can save money on their energy bills, simply by taking a bit more time to think about who supplies America’s energy – and who gives the best deals on energy prices.

Shopping for an energy supplier is wonderfully easy in the digital age. Whereas once upon a time you might have felt there was no choice as to who supplied your electricity and natural gas, you can now view all the suppliers for your area and at the click of a button.

Before you start shopping around for a new energy deal to save you cash, think about your specific energy needs. How much energy does your household consume in a year? What are the peak times of year for your energy consumption? What sources of energy do you depend upon most heavily? You can consult your current energy provider to help gleam much of this information, while there are also gadgets available that monitor your electricity usage and provide you with a constant stream of information about your household energy consumption.

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Tips On How To Handle Bankruptcy Process

The following guest post is provided courtesy of SmallBusinessLoansDirect.com.

Of course, no one wants to go bankrupt.  But unforeseen circumstances can drive the best of people into dire economic conditions, and, at times, declaring bankruptcy can be the best option.  It is estimated that roughly 60% of bankruptcies are largely affected by medical bills and illness.  If you have suffered through the loss of a job, a home, or unexpected wage freezes or cuts during the recession of the last two years, and if this has forced you to consider bankruptcy, consider these facts before moving forward.

Your Credit Score Can Be Rebuilt

Many folks who are forced into bankruptcy due to extraneous reasons such as massive medical bills tend to think that their credit will never be able to be repaired.  This is simply not true.  Of course, your credit will take a major short term hit, but with steady discipline and dedication, you can rebuild your score.

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Benefits and Drawbacks of Short-Term Loans

Today’s post is a guest post from Pound2Day.

There comes a point in many people’s lives where money is tight and funds are short. Bank accounts are tapped.  Credit cards, for whatever reason, aren’t an option, and there isn’t a good place to turn.  Often, and hopefully it’s a one-time thing, people find that they need short-term influxes of cash. Short Term Loans are one option of getting access to money fast when needed.  Here are some of the benefits and drawbacks of short-term loans so you can make a more informed decision about your monetary needs and if this is an option you want to consider.

Benefits

An applicant can get money fast, often within a single day’s notice. If money must be raised (and I emphasize the word must) quickly, this can get you that money fast.

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Avoid the Pitfalls of Overseas Travel and Save Money

This guest article comes from Odysseas Papadimitriou of CardHub.com, an online destination for the best credit card deals.

As you can perhaps tell from my name, I’m Greek. I grew up in Athens before coming to the States for college, and while I ended up putting down roots in the Washington, D.C. area, I go back to Greece a few times a year to visit family. As a result, I’m somewhat of a travel veteran, and over the course of my trips, I’ve picked up a few tips and tricks for how to save time and, perhaps most importantly, money when abroad.

The first thing you must make sure to do when traveling abroad is use a credit card whenever you make a purchase. I’m not saying this because I run a credit card comparison website. Rather, credit cards eliminate worries about finding the best exchange rate or exchanging the right amount of money so as to have enough for your trip but not so much that you have a lot of foreign currency left over afterwards. Credit cards also protect you against pickpockets because they’re easier to conceal than cash and have fraud protection that ensures you won’t lose your money, even if your card gets stolen. In short, using a credit card abroad will help limit the hassle and potential danger of spending overseas.

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Redecorating Your Home Without Breaking the Bank

This is a guest post by Mike Collins. Check out his blog at SavingMoneyToday.net and discover many more tips for saving money and dealing with debt.
Do you ever get sick of coming home and seeing the same old rooms day after day?  Wish you could redecorate your home but think you can’t afford it?

Well think again.  There are many easy ways to redecorate your home even if you’re on a tight budget.  Let’s brainstorm a few ideas…

It costs nothing to rearrange the furniture you already have.   Simply moving things around a little can create a whole new look and it won’t even cost you a dime.  And before you decide to ditch your old furniture altogether, try adding some slipcovers and throw pillows to make it look like something new.

Painting is another inexpensive way to update your home.  Most do it yourselfers can handle painting by themselves as long as the walls and ceilings are in good shape, and spackling and sanding can be mastered with a little practice.  Trust me, I’ve done a ton of painting over the last few years and it has saved me thousands of dollars that would have gone to a professional.

Try replacing your boring old lighting fixtures with something new.  Installing a new ceiling fan or chandelier will cost you several hundred dollars if you have an electrician do it.  Or if you’re handy and feel comfortable doing it yourself you’ll only have to pay the price of the new fixture.

If you’re feeling brave, a new floor will really give your place a new look.  It may take some elbow grease, but most do it yourselfers can install hard wood floors or vinyl tiles themselves.  When we bought our house the kitchen floor was an ugly white tile that was all scuffed and looked just rotten.  Every day my wife told me how much she hated it because no matter how much she scrubbed it always looked dirty.  So with my buddy’s help we put down new vinyl kitchen tile ourselves.  It took the better part of a day but it looks fantastic and we only had to pay for the materials.

Of course if that sounds like too much work for you, you can always start out with smaller projects.  Try installing new switch plates or changing the handles on your kitchen cabinets.  Hang new curtains in the window.  Pick up some new candles or a painting at a yard sale.  Even small changes such as these can have a huge impact.

9 Ways to Slash Your Spending Now

This is guest post written by Mindy Claribel.  Mindy runs MyCCFinder, an online coupons blog that updates at least 4-8 deals a day at your favorite retailers both online, as well as offline!
Everyone has monthly bills and unless you’re still living in your parent’s basement, I wanted to give you some killer tips that you can honestly implement today.  I’m going to take the basic bills that most people today use and what you can do in order to cut them in half.
#1 Your cable TV bill – Most of us today have a cable TV bill and if you’re paying more than $50 for your bill, you’re already paying way too much!  Simply call up your cable company and ask for a reduction.  If they refuse, tell them that you’re going to change services.  Call up competitors and see if they can match.  I know it’s a hassle, but it can be done.  You will find that most of the times they will give you a discount just for asking.
#2 Start using coupons for groceries – You grocery shop and I know you do.  Did you know that there are coupon related sites out there that will help you save on your grocery bill?   Websites such as CouponMom and AFullCup can both help you find printable coupons, as well as show you what coupons you can use on top of the sale price to save a ton of money.
#3 Use coupons on everything – Not only do you want to use coupons on groceries, you will also want to use them on everything else.  From shopping at a hardware store, to eating out at a restaurant, to getting your favorite shoes, you can get what you want and keep money in your pocket.
#4 Buy clothing at a cheap rate – You don’t have to go to the mall to get your favorite clothes.  Outlet stores, as well as thrift stores such as Goodwill and others can save you 80% easily when you want to buy clothing.  Yes, you can find a lot of name brands here!
#5 Analyze your health insurance – I switched over to a higher deductible health insurance account.  Since I’m self employed, I used to pay over $500 for my policy with a $250 deductible.  Today, I have a $3,000 deductible and I only pay $64 a month.  If you’re a healthy person, heavily consider this one.
#6 Look at other insurance – Your car, home, and other types of insurance should be checked up on annually.  See what kind of deals that you can get from other places.  If you can find it cheaper, see if your current insurer will match it.  Most places will give you a discount just for combining all of your insurance.  Check into this as well.
#7 Watch your utilities – It’s not too hard to save on your heating / electric bill.  Invest into a programmable thermostat and even set your temperature down to 62 or so at night when you’re sleeping.  By doing this, you can cut your bill back by at least 30%.
#8 Your phone bill – There’s no reason to pay $100 a month for a simple telephone.  If you do a lot of calling from your home, consider services like MagicJack that can save you $100s over the year.  If you don’t use your cell phone that often, you may want to consider a prepaid plan.
#9 Always compare prices – It sounds easy enough but no matter what you do, make it a habit to get at least 3 different responses.  Whether you want to get something painted, or maybe you want to buy a TV.  NEVER buy from the first place.
As you can see, it’s not really that hard to save.  It looks good on paper, but make a promise to implement it yourself.  By doing so, you can save 100s, if not 1000s per month!