Identify the Enemy: Get a Handle on Your Debt

A major goal for many of us is to get out of debt. And getting out of debt is a great thing, because it’s a lot easier to reach your other financial goals when your money belongs to you instead of to a lender.

But before you can make an effective plan for getting out of debt, you need to know how much debt you have.

So for Day 11 of 31 Days to a Better Bank Balance, add up your debt and write down the total. That’s it.

It might be scary, but it’s relatively simple. Just go through the list of everyone you make (or will eventually need to make) payments to, write down how much you owe to each, and total it up.

Our current total, for example, is $79,337.62.

Once you have the total, feel free to break it down by category if you like (such as mortgage, cars, student loans, and credit cards.) That can help it seem less intimidating.

(The total above is our mortgage balance.)

And don’t worry — tomorrow we’ll talk about the first step you can take to wipe that debt out.