Five Week Debt Diet eCourse

Use a Debt Diet to Eliminate Debt

Welcome to the Debt Diet eCourse. This five-week course will take you using debt to satisfy your wants and needs to getting started with a get-out-of-debt plan. You won't pay off your debt five weeks, but you'll have a foundation in place to get rid of your debt for good.

Lesson Index: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5

Eliminate the Need for Debt

You may already have these financial basics in order.

If that's the case, then this lesson is just a refresher. For everyone else, you'll learn some very important financial lessons that can keep you debt free for life.

Why Debt is Bad For You

Of course, you feel some of the side effects of having too much debt. But, do you know the real reasons that debt is bad for you? You may be surprised to find out.

How to Stop Living Paycheck to Paycheck

If you want to get your debt under control, you need to have more wiggle room in your budget. Living paycheck to paycheck is a dangerous habit that can lead to financial disaster if you're not careful.

How to Live Within Your Means

Living within your means is one of the financial habits recommended in nearly every "How to Get Rich" type of books. It's also a vital part of your debt diet. You must bring your spending within your income to get out of debt for good.

The Importance of an Emergency Fund

Not everyone winds up in debt because they were frivolous spenders.

Some people get into debt because of one major financial disaster that could have been funded with an emergency fund rather than a credit card or loan. Here's why an emergency fund is so important.

How to Create a Budget

Taking the time to set up a budget for your finances will be the difference between a successful debt diet and an unsuccessful one.

You need a budget to help keep your spending in control and to help you pay off your debt.

Welcome to the Debt Diet eCourse. This five-week course will take you using debt to satisfy your wants and needs to getting started with a get-out-of-debt plan. You won't pay off your debt five weeks, but you'll have a foundation in place to get rid of your debt for good.

Lesson Index: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5

Eliminate the Desire for Debt

In the last lesson, we talked about eliminating the need for debt.

It involved getting your finances to a place where you don't need to rely on debt. This week, we learn how to eliminate the desire for debt, a step that's not always easy to master.

Ways to Stop Emotional Credit Card Spending

You might be an emotional credit card spender if you go on spending sprees to make yourself feel better or if you spend because you're already feeling good. It's important to recognize when your emotions drive your spending habits and replace those spending urges with something less expensive.

Recognize Impulsive Credit Card Spending

Emotional and impulsive credit card spending are different, but impulsive credit card spending can be based on emotion. Impulses are uncontrollable and often unconscious urges. It may be harder to pick up on impulsive credit card spending which is why a little more attention must be paid.

Is Clutter Contributing to Your Debt?

It may sound strange, but clutter can indeed cause you to overspend or even make your debt harder to manage because you can't find your bills - or your checkbook.

Learn how clutter contributes to debt and how you can clear the clutter and your debt.

Get Help Through Debtor's Anonymous

Debtors Anonymous is a free support group to help people that have problems controlling their money and debt. If you show signs of a debt addiction, joining Debtors Anonymous may help you learn to resist the urge to spend.

Welcome to the Debt Diet eCourse. This five-week course will take you using debt to satisfy your wants and needs to getting started with a get-out-of-debt plan. You won't pay off your debt five weeks, but you'll have a foundation in place to get rid of your debt for good.

Lesson Index: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5

Assess Your Debt

Many debt plans jump right into debt assessment and repayment.

I saved it for a couple of weeks because I believe you have to face the things make you create new debt before you can actually pay off debt. Once you've eliminated the desire and need to take on more debt, you'll be in a better position to face your debt.

How to Add Up Your Debt

This might be the most painful part of debt diet. It's the equivalent of getting on the scale and checking your weight. It's also a critical part of the diet since it lets you know exactly where you stand.

Warning Signs of Too Much Debt

Even before you look at the numbers, there are some sure signs that you have more debt than you can handle. Use these signals as a way to know it's time to scale back on your debt.

How Much Debt is Too Much

No one can say with certainty that $1,000 or $40,000 is too much debt because it depends on your individual situation. You can tell whether you have too much debt by comparing your total debt to your other finances - like your income.

Calculate Your Debt-to-Income Ratio

Your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio is an important number that tells you just how much of your income is being spent on debt. The higher the percentage, the more you're spending on debt. A DTI ratio lower than 36% is ideal.

Good Debt vs. Bad Debt

There are some debts that can be considered good.

If there is such a thing as good debt it includes loans that were used to buy things that appreciate in value or help you make money. This includes mortgages and student loans.

Welcome to the Debt Diet eCourse. This five-week course will take you using debt to satisfy your wants and needs to getting started with a get-out-of-debt plan. You won't pay off your debt five weeks, but you'll have a foundation in place to get rid of your debt for good.

Lesson Index: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5

Make a Debt Plan

Now that you know how much debt you have, it's time to figure out how you're going to pay it off.

Don't worry if you think you don't have enough money to completely pay off your debt. There are steps to help make the most of your income and get rid of your debt for good.

How to Set a Reasonable Debt Free Goal

Setting a debt-free goal that's too aggressive will only frustrate you when you can't make the payments you need to be out of debt in such a quick time frame. There's a right time to get out of debt and this lesson will teach you how to figure it out.

Prioritize Your Debts

When you read this lesson, you might argue that these debts are in the wrong order - credit cards fall at the bottom of the list. Compared to other debts on the list - like your mortgage - they're less important. Falling behind on your credit cards damages your credit, but falling behind on your mortgage payments does that and puts at risk of being homeless.

Six Debt Repayment Options

When it comes to paying off your debt, you have several options.

You can pay it off yourself, you can enlist the help of a debt management company, or you can file bankruptcy. Weigh the pros and cons of each option before you proceed.

How to Make a Debt Payoff Plan

This is a guide that will show you step-by-step how to make a debt payoff plan. There's even a link to a free worksheet you can use to create your plan.

77 Ways to Get Money for Your Debt

As you put your debt repayment plan into action, refer to this list of ways to generate more money for your debt. Not all the items will apply to you. In fact, you may only be able to do one or two of the things on this list. But every little bit counts when it comes to paying off your debt.

Welcome to the Debt Diet eCourse. This five-week course will take you using debt to satisfy your wants and needs to getting started with a get-out-of-debt plan. You won't pay off your debt five weeks, but you'll have a foundation in place to get rid of your debt for good.

Lesson Index: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5

Debt Repayment in Action

You have a lot of the hard work out of the way. You've worked on getting rid of your bad debt habits.

You've decided how you're going to pay your debt (or at least started thinking about it). Now, it's time to put your plan into action. Make sure you adjust your monthly budget to account for your new debt payments. Use a debt tracker to measure your progress paying off your debt. Keep these things in mind as you pay on your debt.

How to Snowball Your Debt

A debt snowball is a method you would use to knock out smaller debts first. For example, you'd pay off a $200 credit card balance before tackling a $2,000 credit card balance, regardless of the interest rate. It's called snowball because you build momentum as those smaller debts are eliminated.

5 Habits You Must Change Before You Get Out of Debt

If you want to get out of debt, there are some bad habits you have to get rid of first, like justifying purchases you want by calling them "needs." Putting your financial decisions in perspective will help you get out of debt and stay out.

10 Ways to Avoid New Credit Card Debt

Be careful about accruing new debt while you're trying to pay off your current debt. It will only slow down your debt repayment progress. Instead, go to a cash-only spending plan and save up for large purchases like electronics and new furniture.

5 Stupid Ways to Pay Your Debt

As you're paying off your debt, you may be tempted to take some options that seem easier.

But, these choices could hurt you in the long run.

More Articles on Reducing Debt

As you continue paying off your debt, visit the Reducing Debt section to get help and tips on making your way out of debt.

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