Throughout your kids' childhood, you probably had to pony up pretty often: clothes, food, car, medical expenses (including insurance), school -- and the list goes on.
In doing so, you might have paid some of those expenses with a credit card. Now that your children are adults, you have an opportunity to rid yourself of debt once and for all.
There are several things an older adult can do to begin getting out of debt. Here are a few:
- Stop buying on credit. This step is a big one, and it deserves to be at the top of the list. The longer you charge expenses on credit, the bigger the hole you'll dig for yourself.
- Devote more money to debt payment. The quicker you pay down your outstanding balances on credit cards and loans (tip: always pay more than the "minimum payment"), the less money you'll have to pay in interest overall.
- Consider downsizing your home. Now that your children are grown, you may find you don't need the square footage you did when raising a family. Downsizing will save money in both the mortgage and utilities.
- Make it count when you go out.Cut out unnecessary expenses like eating fast food or picking up drinks every day at the gas station. Buy in bulk, dine in and save your money for experiences worth paying for.
Next: School's back in session.