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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Tightening Up the Purse Strings

A few years back Ms. O launched a campaign to help women get out of debt, guess she foresee where this economy was headed, called the Debt Diet. In this program you assess how in debt you really are, who you owe, how much you make, and how much you can afford to cut back to save and get out of debt. When it first came out, I was in undergrad working  full time and paying tuition and felt like I never had enough but I was always adamant about NOT having credit cards and abusing credit so when I read over the action plan I felt like it didn't apply to me because all I had was tuition, rent, food and life that made me feel broke.

Now that I've graduated and started to re-pay the sharks (Don Federal Loan) and raise a family I know that something more needs to happen in this old wallet of mine so I put myself on my own version of the Debt Diet. So far here's what I got:

  • We moved into family owned property so our rent isn't as high as it could be 
  • No manicures, pedicures, facials, or hair salons 
  • No dining out more than twice per pay period (it hurts but saves us $$$)
  • No Starbucks! or unnecessary "treats" for Chunks :-(
  • No cover charges, no itunes, Amazon, or Craigslist
A lot of limitations and naming almost every dollar in hopes that in at least a year we can move into our OWN place and still live life like we want. Just like your ends, you gotta cut a little dead off to see growth! Now with each cut there's a reason, since I'm a logics girl:

  • While living around family causes them to be a little more in our business than we would like, I've been putting away what we used to pay in rent in Philly and building our cushion.
  • I've learned to maintain my hair myself, sometimes a little hard to do energy-wise, but choosing the right product and a careful eye makes it ok.
  • By not dining out as much as we want, I've gotten back into the kitchen and feel better about what Chunks gets on a regular basis.
  • Going out has been limited and my social scene has dimmed quite a bit but its ok, the clubs will be there when we make bank!
Of course I've slipped up a few times but I'm getting the hang of it. Now to get the Mr on board and cut his Craigslist addiction is the next step along with keeping me out of children's stores lol.

What budget tips do you use to save up? 

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