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Essential finance tips for Canadians living in debt

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Despite the fact that Canada’s household debt-to-income ratio has slightly decreased over the year (from 177.5% in the first quarter to 177.1% in the second) many still continue to struggle. Data shows that households are using a record 14.9% of their spending money to pay for debt obligations like the ever-growing cost of growing interest payments.

Even though this is a reality for a number of people living in Canada, many often feel too ashamed to admit that they are struggling financially. Because of this, they may not seek the advice that they so desperately need to free themselves from their struggles.

Are you struggling with debt but aren’t sure where to start, or are too embarrassed to ask for help? Here are some tips that might put you in the right direction.

Consult With a Professional

The best advice you can get is from a professional credit counselling agency in Canada that offers judgement-free counselling services like Credit Canada Debt Solutions. They are a not-for-profit agency that has your best interests at heart, and they even provide free debt assessments.

When you speak to one of their certified Credit Counsellors you will truly feel like you are talking to someone who cares and who genuinely wants to help. They will go through your financials with you and come up with the best, most viable options that you can use to reduce your debt.

One of those solutions may be to get you started on a Debt Consolidation Program where all of your unsecured debts are merged into one single lower monthly payment with reduced or stopped interest fees. They will even negotiate with creditors on your behalf and put an end to those nerve-wracking collection calls.

Create a Monthly Budget

If you choose to contact one, a Credit Counsellor will work with you to create a monthly budget that will help you manage your finances, save money, and also pay off your debt. Even if you don’t decide to contact one you should still set yourself up with budget – it’s one of the most effective ways to gain financial stability.

Here’s an in-depth look at how to create a budget that works for you. There are a number of apps you can even download on your phone that can help you do this. Just being able to see where and how you’re spending money can be really helpful towards creating a debt repayment plan.

Reduce Unnecessary Expenses

Once you have a budget and are able to tell where your money is going, you can take a look and see what sort of expenses you can eliminate. For example, do you really need that Netflix subscription? Could you eat in more and go out less?

Are you spending too much money on non-necessities like a new pair of shoes or maybe home electronics that you could live without?

All of these questions should be asked. There are a number of sacrifices that need to be made when experiencing financial troubles, but it is well worth it in the long run. Besides, there are tons of ways to have fun without needing to spend money, and learning how to do so will improve not only your finances but your outlook on life as well. 

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