Debt-free living leads to more Homestead Abundance
Get out of debt. Living debt-free is the first principle of the Homestead Life. Living with debt sucks the abundance out of your mind. Debt is like a cloud that overshadows all the good that comes into your life. It makes you overlook your blessings. It makes you focus on your lack of money, instead of on the good things in your life that money can’t buy. Decide today to get out of debt. Stay out of debt.
1. Take a hard, analytical look at your debt.
If you need to, get help from your Pastor, Rabbi, or a financial advisor, or debt counsellor. Analyse which part of the debt is student loans, which part is consumer debt, and which part is necessary to purchase your home, or allow you to go to work. Begin eliminating consumer debt, by stopping the outflow. My friends put their credit cards in a can of water in the freezer, so that they still had them if they needed them, but they would have to hunt for them and thaw them out to use them. This helped them avoid impulse shopping.
2. Create a budget – make it a livable budget.
Don’t go for austerity measures to pay off your debt, but forego a few luxuries so that you can put the cash saved toward your debt. Austerity measures are like going on a fast. When you fast, its hard to think of anything else but food, and you feel deprived, if your family doesn’t fast with you. Austerity measures are like that, too. They remind you of what you can’t have instead of giving you a positive goal – being debt free – to work toward. You need a to change your thinking to win the debt-free game.
3. Pay off one of your loans first, by putting the extra savings into that one loan.
Some experts suggest paying off the highest interest loan first. Some experts suggest paying off the smallest loan first, so that you have quick success in your efforts. If you pay off your highest interest loan first, you will be paying less in interest and more toward principle. This is what we did. If you pay off your smallest loan first, you have immediate success, and are more motivated to stay with the budget. Either way, once one loan is paid off, take the money that you were paying toward that loan and apply it to the next loan in your program, along with the regular payment due. You won’t miss the money and it will help you pay down the loan faster.
4. When you pay off one loan, celebrate your success
Take the family out to dinner or have a feast meal at home, or purchase something on your need list, that you’ve been waiting for – paying cash. This celebration reinforces your success and removes any feelings of poverty or lack from your mind. Celebrating the small victories is a very important part of living the debt free, homestead abundance lifestyle.
5. Your food pantry can help you pay down your debt.
Your pantry staples like rice, beans, and other staples are usually bought in bulk, and so cost less than expensive processed foods. By using your staples while you are trying to pay down your debt, you save money on your groceries. You eat simpler, healthier meals. And you retrain your mind to use what you have, instead of running to the store for what you don’t have. Remember to replenish what you use periodically, by buying in bulk or in caselots.
6. Consider eliminating the second outside income.
This seems counter-intuitive. Obviously if you are in debt you need more money, right? But for most folks, with children at home that require babysitters, paid work for the primary caregiver, usually the mom, isn’t profitable. When you consider the cost of the second car, the work wardrobe, babysitting costs, and restaurant or convenience meals, the second job can be very costly. Often the Mom is working for only a couple bucks an hour, after the expenses of working are removed. Consider whether it may be better, in your circumstances, for Mom to work at home for her family. This eliminates expenses from the budget with her labour, rather than wasting her energy working outside the home. As a SAHM, homeschooling my 3 children, I made a game out of saving money by producing the things at home that I used to buy – laundry detergent, hand soap, window cleaner, bathroom cleaner, bread, yogourt and cheese, sausages and meat, even knitting yarn and clothing. While every effort doesn’t save you money – it does give you more control and more satisfaction – more Homestead abundance.
7. Consider downsizing your home.
If you are living in a large home and have a big mortgage, consider selling your home and buying a smaller home that you can pay off completely or perhaps changing your neighbourhood, so you can live debt-free.
8. Grow some of your own food
Grow a garden, starts some sprouts in a jar on the counter, put some lettuce in a pot in a sunny window or apartment balcony. Don’t wait till you move to a quarter-section before you start to learn to grow things. Start today – even in winter. Every season that you can garden, you will learn more. Gardening books are only the beginning in learning to grow your own food – experience will teach you more in a season than the books can teach you. And every meal that you can grow yourself is something that you don’t have to buy from the store.
This is just the beginning of making the choice to live debt-free. The debt-free lifestyle is full of Homestead abundance. When you take action to become debt-free you flip the switch in your mind and you begin to see abundance in your life. Instead of the lack of funds that debt focuses on, you start to see new lavish blessings everyday. What’s your #homestead_abundance today?
This is a blog hop
Welcome to Homestead Abundance Tuesdays, this is a blog hop! If you are a blogger, please feel free to link-up and share as many posts as you would like pertaining to:
- Urban or Rural Homesteading
- Anything DIY
- Cooking from scratch
- Repurposed Projects
- Upcycled Frugal Finds
- Animal Care
- Natural Gardening Tips
- Herbal Remedies
- Green Cleaners and cosmetics
Anything that speaks to you of your Homestead Abundance, that you think will build and encourage our community.
I will share my personal favourites on my Facebook page this week. And next week I’ll pick 3 posts to feature right here.
This week’s Featured Posts
from Last Week’s Homestead Abundance Link-up are:
The Micro-Farm Project – where Kari writes:
“The Micro Farm Project is a beautiful place where veggies, flowers, fruit, and herbs grow and our small livestock animals provide us with fun and food. We are creating a tiny “farm” on our urban lot and are always experimenting with ways for our family to become more self-reliant and efficient. Our practices are slowly becoming more sustainable, replenishing our little piece of land, our health and our spirits. We invite others to join us and learn step-by-step to create a healthier, more self-sufficient lifestyle.” Check out Kari’s post.
How to Use A Whole Ham by Kristina of the Proverbs 31 Woman
Kristina writes, “At this time of year, ham is often available for an excellent price – often just 99 cents a pound! But too many of don’t take advantage of such sales because we can’t imagine eating sliced ham for weeks on end. Happily, there are other things to do with ham! Here are some ideas.” Check out her post.
Ladies, feel free to grab the button to display proudly on you blog and lense. Or just use a text link “Featured on Homestead Abundance”
It’s Time To Share Your Posts
Bloggers, use the linky tool on the bottom of this post to share your best post about your Homestead Abundance. Non-bloggers, feel free to add a comment here with any ideas or thoughts you have concerning homestead abundance. Every week I will be featuring the most viewed posts so link-up your best ones 🙂
When linking your posts, there are only a couple simple guidelines I’d like for you to follow:
1. Please link your posts back to this blog hop, not just the blog in general. Linking back here helps build our community by sending your readers to all of the other shared posts. Grab the button below by installing the html into your post or create a text link somewhere in your post.
2. Link to a specific post and not just to your blog’s homepage, so that future readers can find your post when they look.
3. Please make your linked post relevant. Don’t link to posts that are time sensitive, like giveaways, and limited time offers.
Grab my button:
Or just use a text link:
Homestead Abundance Tuesdays #2