Hi all, To answer your question, workingonit, you'll need to do multiple things to address they credit card pay-down and the savings dilemna. The late Joe Dominguez, co-author of "Your Money or Your Life", advocated frugality, analyzing every single dollar that you earn, and every single that you spend. The novel idea is, whatever you don't spend, you get to save! Make a game out of it, and when you have enough savings you'll have your "life" back, or the freedom to pursue your life, not as a debt slave tied to a job you dislike! Constant frugal spending and discovering new personal revenue streams will lead you to discover your solution to debt eradication. According to Dominguez, your regular debt pay-down is the SAME as savings. It's true, add up all your money and deduct your debt and that is what you have! Each month, you will be saving and you will be increasing your overall cash balance. So for example if you have $20,000 in a bank account and $30,000 on credit cards, you don't really have $20,000 now do you? Think about it, you are still $10,000 in the hole. Dominguez would have said to pay down whatever is most expensive first AND, remember that paying down debt IS saving! Logic follows that if you have cash sitting around when you really owe it to someone,you are just mindlessly paying interest to park their money in your bank account. You have to pay it eventually so you may as well just pay all back today that is the cheapest way. The remainer of the balance you can chip away weekly, throwing a little bit whenever you have the cash. For the time being until you are out of the hole and have built up 6 months of living expenses, you must rely on your credit cards for emergency funds, and that is the cold hard fact which many os us have gotten ourselves in to. I, too, am working on it! Almost there!
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