This week on my blog, I am tackling the theme of “Real solutions for real problems”. My last post was about how to deal with too much bad debt, and today’s is about what to do if your income isn’t enough to cover your expenses. In other words, what can you do if there is too much month left at the end of the money?If you find yourself in the tough position of having a higher list of expenses than income, you need to take immediate action. Don’t postpone and hope things will get better, and under no circumstances should you live off of your credit cards. Instead, focus on a two-stage assault: 1) lower your expenses, and 2) make more money.
Lower your expenses. Seriously consider the following questions:
- Can you move into a smaller house/apartment with lower rent?
- Can you combine cable/TV/internet for a better rate?
- Can you negotiate a lower interest rate on your credit card?
- Do you really use that gym membership?
- Can you wash your car yourself instead of taking it to a carwash?
- Can you make your own coffee instead of going out to Starbuck’s?
I don’t want you to do anything that’s going to suck the joy out of life and make you into a miser, but you NEED to find a way to spend less money each month. It’s just a tough reality of the situation you are in. There are even apps with scripts for helping you to renegotiate bills. Why not see if one of them can help you?
Make more money. You need to find a way to make more money without sacrificing a lot of time, which means that getting a second job is out of the question. While mowing lawns or washing cars might put some cash in your pocket, it won’t be a lot. Instead, look for ways to make big checks in a small amount of time: flip land or houses, drop ship a product online, clean out your garage or attic and sell your stuff at a yard sale, or if you are an expert in an area hire yourself out for a few short jobs on Craigslist.
Right now it might feel like you are at the bottom of a deep well trying to claw your way out. I know how it feels – I was there once. But by making a few changes in your life and taking decisive action, you can have the happy experience of having too much money left over at the end of the month. Isn’t any effort you make to get there worth it?