Managing your finances may seem complicated, but it’s really just a simple equation: income – expenses = what you have left. However, banks and credit companies offer borrowers a way to increase their spending power without actually increasing the amount of money they have on hand, thereby creating debt.

Some debt—such as your mortgage or car loan—is to be expected. However, credit card use is significantly increasing. Credit cards were the most-used method of payment in 2020, with 38% of POS payments being made via credit card. The average US household has approximately $5700 in credit card debt, with many families expressing concern about being able to make their monthly payments.

Here are some ways to reduce your monthly expenses so you can take more steps towards paying off your debt.

Sell Any Unwanted Items on Local Marketplace Apps

Local buy and sell pages, such as Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist, are a great way to get rid of any unwanted items—including clothing, small appliances, gaming systems, furniture, and so much more. Selling unwanted items is a great way to get a little extra money that you can put towards one of your monthly bills.

Reduce Your Monthly Bills

Recurring monthly bills are one of the inevitable parts of adulthood, but there are steps you can take to reduce the amount you have to pay each month! There are plenty of ways to minimize your energy consumption, including:

  • Reduce water usage by keeping the tap off while brushing your teeth, handwashing dishes rather than using the dishwasher, and taking shorter showers.
  • Reduce energy usage by lowering your thermostat and keeping the blinds closed while you’re away. Turn off lights and unplug appliances when not in use.
  • Reduce cell phone and cable bills by resisting the urge to upgrade to the “latest and greatest” device. Audit your package and see if you’re paying for any features you don’t use regularly.

Do Your Dry Cleaning at Home

Or don’t purchase clothes that require special cleaning processes. At-home dry cleaning kits and stain remover pens are a great way to reduce your regular trips to the cleaners. If DIY dry cleaning isn’t your thing, see if your company offers any discounts or group rates.

Simplify Your Beauty Routine

Beauty products are often in high demand, so many brands charge a premium just because they can. Do you really need a 12-step beauty routine, or could you cut back to just a few products? Look for drugstore-brand products that can do the same thing as boutique brands do, too.

Look For Other, Unexpected Ways to Reduce Expenses

Are you paying a premium for the size of your home’s trash can? Could you sell a vehicle and be a one-car household? Could you walk or take public transportation for most errands? Sometimes, all it takes is having a hard conversation with yourself about what expenses are true “needs” and what are “wants.”

Want to take steps to improve your financial health? The team at Briteside Solutions can help! We offer an innovative program designed to help borrowers reduce their debt and move towards a brighter financial future. Call (888) 851-0646 to get started today!