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Is it time to reorganize your financial closet?

One minute you're fairly satisfied with the way things are going in your financial life. The next thing you know, a few incidents occur that you leave you struggling to make ends meet. That's not enough to make you panic, however, but before you know it, everything seems to be spiraling out of control, and you know you need to do something before the situation gets completely out of hand.

Given the assumption that you probably don't keep a list of debt relief alternatives on hand, it might be helpful to research various options in order to find a way to lose your debt without losing your home, your business or "the family farm."

Ways to get out of debt

Perhaps your grandfather or parent used to tell you things like "make a dime, save a nickel" or other little mantras meant to help you save money. Even if you typically follow the wise advice of your ancestors, things happen, life throws curve balls, and you might wind up struggling financially when you least expect it. The following list includes common debt relief options that may or may not suit your immediate needs and long-term financial goals:

  • Frugality: You might be amazed how much money you can save with a big dose of smart shopping. All those coupon-crazy people you see on TV may not seem so crazy once you try using coupons, shopping for generic brands and cutting other costs through creative means to help you get out of debt.
  • Creativity: If you borrow books from a library instead of purchasing them on line, have stay-home date nights, exchange your daily Starbucks java for some made-at-home brew, etc., you might be surprised at how much money you save in the long-run.
  • Trim excess: Generally speaking, many people mistakenly equate luxuries with necessities. If you carefully review your expenditures, you might find ways to cut expenses you didn't realize existed. Luxuries people often trim to save money include cable TV, monthly manicures or hair salon/spa appointments, and off-the-rack clothes shopping (exchanged for consignment sales).
  • Alternative measures: There may be other ways to get rid of debt. If your situation is minor, it may simply be a matter of spending less, perhaps selling a few assets or obtaining an alternate payment agreement with your lender. If you're a Wisconsin, resident, a Chapter 128 plan may be just what you're looking for. This is a financial reorganization option available in this state that allows you to enter a payment plan that typically occurs over a three-year period. In fact, you may not even have to step foot inside a courtroom because a debt relief attorney could file your case for you.

Since no two financial situations are exactly the same, the key is finding the best solution for your particular problem. If you are not well-versed in state laws that govern such matters and do not have a formal background in finance education, you may want to seek experienced guidance and support before determining your course of action.

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