How to Simultaneously Manage Increased Expenses and Debt in Arizona?
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Our experienced Tucson bankruptcy attorney, Eric Ollason, knows that as inflation continues to surge, consumer prices are hitting peaks that have not been seen in a generation.
Economists list multiple reasons for soaring prices, including the 2021 global supply chain crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and unexpected demands for certain goods.
No matter how you slice it, or who is to blame, our Arizona communities are seeing a startling change in how far they can (or cannot!) stretch a dollar these days. These challenging times are causing significant financial concerns in households across America, and around the world.
For Arizonans who have existing debt that is already causing ongoing stress, higher costs may require them to use their credit cards more, which can lead to severe anxiety about how they are going to pay for it all
If you are worried about new debt that adds to existing debt, here are a few tips to help keep an eye on your expenses.
Make a Financial Plan and Stick To It
Let’s face it. No one likes to budget. But in these increasingly challenging times, with everything from gas, groceries, and household goods costs seemingly out of control, now is the time to make a financial plan.
If you have not already, write down each of your monthly expenses, including fixed costs like rent, car payments, and insurance costs, then your fluctuating expenses, like grocery and utility bills.
For the latter, note where you can cut costs. Challenge yourself to spend smarter at the grocery or Walmart by making a list before you shop — and sticking to it. Likewise, look for store or manufacturer coupons and plan to shop when there is a sale on items you need. Every little bit of savings can help minimize your checkout total.
Tightening your wallet at places like these is a really great start. Stick with the essentials and make a deal with yourself that once prices go down, you can splurge a little to celebrate your previous restraint.
Next, assess your utility usage and prepare for the seasonally high daytime temperatures that come with Arizona’s summer months. While summer sparks higher energy demand, causing the market price to increase, look around your home to see where you can cut back on the air conditioning or water use to help save money. If you are currently paying too much for cable, internet, or cellphones, comparison shop with your current provider’s competitors. They often offer deals to new customers, which can cut your expenses by a third or more.
Finally, and this is the part no one likes, look at your credit card bills and bank statements and note any unnecessary expenditures. Whether it is a streaming service you rarely use or dining out, there are typically places where we can all cut back.
Avoid Using Credit Cards or Taking Out Loans to Bridge the Financial Gap
If you are currently working hard to pay down your debt but foresee — or are already experiencing — the rise in consumer expenses leading to increased credit card use, it is time to evaluate your existing debt from all angles.
That could mean consolidating several credit cards onto a lower APR card or focusing on paying off one card with a higher interest rate first, so you can have a little more breathing room.
If you are overwhelmed with credit card debt and need help consolidating your debts through Chapter 13 bankruptcy or seeking debt relief through Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, we can help.
We understand this is an incredibly tough time for everyone, and provide free consultations for all Arizona residents, so they understand each of their financial relief options now and going forward.
Contact Our Skilled Arizona Bankruptcy Attorney Today to Schedule a Free Assessment
Contact our experienced bankruptcy attorney in Pima County, Eric Ollason, to learn more about your legal rights and options to start fresh by calling (520) 791-2707 to schedule a free consultation today.