Credit repair can eliminate reporting errors, tidy up your report, and improve your credit scores, but the real potential of credit repair is best realized when combined with a lifestyle change. Now is the time to work towards genuine financial stability. You must make financial decisions in the context of a reasonable and well developed budget. You must also allow for a regular, disciplined habit of saving money. This may seem like a tall order, but it can be done. Once you get started you will discover that the rewards are far greater than the costs involved.
Getting a budget organized can be a stressful project. It can be difficult to examine the realities of one’s financial life, but there is nothing more important, and once you take the big step you are bound to experience a new found feeling of empowerment and personal control. Clear a couple of hours in your schedule, get a new pad of legal paper and a pen, clean off the kitchen table, and prepare to build a budget.
Write down every expense that you can think of. Start with the big items like housing and auto payments and work down to the daily incidental expenses like lunch and gas. Don’t forget utilities, phone, cable, and all of those little monthly operating costs. Everything counts, and little items add up. Do you take an annual vacation? Estimate the amount of money you need and write it down. It’s important to include annual and occasional expenses in your budget; estimate the amount and divide by twelve to arrive at the amount you must set aside each month.
Pay Yourself Too
There is one more category of expense that you need to add to your list. When it comes to credit repair, this is the one that counts the most. Add a monthly amount for you. This is the amount that you should put into a savings account each and every month. There is nothing as important as setting aside money. In the long run this habit will pay you back many times over; a savings account will give you a buffer in case of unexpected expenses, protect your hard won credit repair results, and be a first step in building solid personal wealth. You might consider ten percent of your income as an appropriate amount.
Evaluate the Results
Once you have listed your expenses (including the amount you decided to contribute to a savings account) it’s time to add them up and calculate a monthly total. How does it compare with your after tax income? If you can cover all of your costs and still have elbow room you are in great shape. If this exercise has revealed the unfortunate reality that you are spending more money than you make, it’s time to make some decisions. This is not always easy, but a little creative thinking might make the process more manageable than you think.
If you need to cut costs you should think outside of the box. Get a little creative. You might want to consider that everything is fair game. This can be a big step, but give it a try. Are you paying a lot in rent? The market has changed so much in the last few years that you might find a great new place for even less money. How about your car? Is your payment killing you? Car dealers are hungry and auto finance managers are brilliant at structuring deals; you might be able to trade in your big payment for a little one and still drive off the lot in a nice set of wheels.
Credit Repair Refinances
As your credit repair program starts to yield results you may find yourself in a position to refinance your higher rate debt and to reduce your payments on existing accounts. This is true of everything from mortgages, to auto loans, to credit cards. Over time credit repair will improve your credit scores and allow infinitely more flexibility than you had before. The key to success is to approach the project from all angles. Make your foundation strong and put careful thought into managing and preserving your financial health each and every day. You can succeed!
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