Honesty and trust are vital in a healthy relationship. If you’re in debt and hiding it from your partner, family and friends, you’re only ignoring the inevitable. Sooner or later they’re going to find out about your debts and feel betrayed. Wouldn’t you rather tell them on your terms? Here’s how to talk openly about your debts with those you trust and to solve your debt situation.
- Admit You Have a Problem
Admitting you have a problem is the first step on the road to recovery. Just because you have a problem with debt, doesn’t mean you’re a bad person, but by ignoring it, it’s only going to get worse. It’s best to come to terms with your debt situation before moving forward.
- Be Open and Honest
Being open and honest isn’t easy, especially if you’ve been hiding your debts and bad spending habits from a loved one. Once you’ve admitted you need help, the next step is to come clean with the ones you trust. Be willing to share your bank statements, bills, credit card statements and anything else of relevance, so it’s out in the open and you can move forward knowing you’ve come clean.
- Review Your Credit Card Statement Regularly
While credit cards can be a great way to earn reward points and manage short-term cash flow, studies have shown consumers tend to spend more when they pay with plastic. That’s because the pain of spending is gone. Promise your loved ones that you’ll check your credit card statement online every week to ensure your spending within your limits. If you still can’t get your credit card spending under control, consider cutting up your credit card and dealing strictly in cash. It may be a pain, but it’s better than getting further in credit card debt.
- Pay More Than the Minimum Monthly Payment
If you’re making interest only payments on your line of credit or paying just the minimum on your credit card, not only could it take you years to pay off your debts, it could cost you hundreds or thousands in interest. Do yourself a favour and pay more than the minimum. There are two popular ways to repay debt: you can start with the debt with the smallest balance or start with the debt with the highest interest rate. Whichever method you choose, try to put every spare penny towards reaching debt freedom. Come up with a debt repayment plan that’s realistic and more importantly gets you out of debt.
- Get Professional Help
If you’ve been ignoring the elephant in the room – your debts – for far too long and you owe a lot, seek professional help. There’s nothing to feel ashamed about asking for help. Your family and friends will be supportive of your decision if they truly care about you.