- Consider ways to get out of debt.
This is the biggest one, and it may be quite difficult for some people. It may also require some radical and creative rethinking, such as pooling resources with family and friends, relocation, retraining, job changes, or rethinking how you use and manage any assets you own.
- Research your bank or lending institution.
Choose one which is local, decentralised, and committed to supporting its local community. If this feels like a daunting task, get together with others to research together and compare notes.
Reach out to trusted friends or members of your community for tips or professional advice on how to structure your finances to reduce outgoings, clear debt faster, and make the most of your assets.
- Get together with others
Throughout time, communities have functioned more efficiently when they collaborate. From setting up food co-ops to sharing both the work and bounty of your harvests, to share-farming, childcare or group homeschooling, dividing property ownership or time banking with others, there are plenty of ways you can work together to create equitable exchanges of resources, time and goods to the benefit of all involved. See more about time banking here. [link to How to start a Time Bank.]
- Pay off your debt
The avalanche method of debt reduction means you take the highest interest debt you have and pay off as much as you can possibly budget for to get rid of it as quickly as possible, then move on to the next highest interest debt. Continue until the debt is all gone. The snowball method means you pay the most you can budget off the smallest debt owing first, then proceed to pay off the larger amounts with more funds available to reduce them as you progress.
- Set (and stick to) a budget
Using a realistic budget to moderate your financial ins and outs can feel a bit restrictive, but on the plus side, it can make a huge difference if you have some ambitious goals like getting out of debt or saving towards a goal. There’s plenty of advice online or through community services like Citizens Advice Bureau if you’re not sure where to start. Even the most basic budget can help you identify areas where you’re overspending or spending unnecessarily, as well as promote more creativity in your thoughts about income and outgoings, and the reward of achieving your goal makes any pain in the journey worthwhile in the end.
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