During the middle of last year I picked up a copy of Dave Ramsey’s book, The Total Money Makeover, and I was so happy I did. It really helped my husband and I to get our finances into check and start working on paying off some of the truly massive debt we incurred when our businesses failed and did a house remodel that we ended up not being able to afford.
We have a plan now to “snowball” away our debt and figure with no changes (good or bad) we will have it gone in 3 years (not including our mortgage).
One of the techniques I picked up was to use cash for all your purchases. It has not worked out for all of our expenditures (gas simply was not convenient and when do you purposely overspend on gas? It’s not really an impulse item). And I still put some business purchases on my credit card- but pay it off at the end of the month.
What I have found is we are less and less reliant on credit cards- we pretty much either use cash or a debit card, so if we don’t have the money- we don’t buy it!!
The cash system won’t work for everyone, but I have found I like it (and it is fun when you realize you have leftover at the end of the month!!). To organize my cash I use on of these, the Savvycents Cash Organizer. I love it.
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