Category Archive: Guide

Next Month Syndrome

There was a time when I was infected with a terrible condition – Next Month Syndrome

When my credit card bill came in the mail, I would make a promise to myself –

Next month, I’m going to do better.

When I reached for my credit card to make ends meet, I would promise myself –

Next month, I’m going to do better.

When a friend would mention that he was living on a budget, I would promise myself –

Next month, I’m going to do better.

When I would read a story about someone saving for retirement, I would promise myself –

Next month, I’m going to do better.

Here are some common side effects of Next Month Syndrome

A failure to regularly balance one’s checkbook

A propensity to run out of money before one runs out of month

A constant worry about higher and higher interest rates

A rolling credit card balance, which rarely goes down, but often goes up

A stack of bills, unorganized, or even, unopened, piled high on the kitchen counter

A box of abandoned budgeting software and personal finance books

A growing sense of worry and fear

If any of these symptoms sound familiar, fear not!  There are cures for Next Month Syndrome!

Gather up all of your most recent bank statements, your checkbook, and a calculator.  You need to find out exactly where you stand.

  • How much money do you have in cash?
  • How much money do you have in savings?
  • How much money do you have in checking?
  • How much debt do you have?

Create a budget.  It doesn’t have to be overly-complicated and you will struggle for the first month.  That’s okay.  The purpose?  You need to know exactly how much money you bring home and exactly how much money you spend.  Resources –

Develop some system for organizing financial documents.  For me, I use an expandable file box and I file bills alphabetically.  I use one file folder for each year’s bills.  At the end of each year, I simply store that year’s file box, and buy a new one.

  • Set aside some time, monthly and weekly, to manage finances
  • Encourage each member of the household to participate in the process

Consider reading the 33 Days Series here at No Credit Needed.  This information-rich resource should help those who are looking to save money and get out of debt.

If you are in debt, and you are ready to get out, consider the following resources –

Now, I’ve saved the most important step for last.  See, when I had Next Month Syndrome, I was in denial.  I wanted to live just like everyone else and I wanted to own what everyone else owned.  Then, I discovered something, a deep dark secret – all of those people – the folks that I wanted to be “just like” – THEY had Next Month Syndrome, too!

I made a decision – the most important decision I’ve ever made.  I decided to do something about Next Month Syndrome.  I created a plan, I set myself with determination, and I turned away from my old lifestyle.  It took some time, and I still feel some of the long-term effects, but I was able to overcome Next Month Syndrome.  You can, too!

Remember – All of the planning in the world is useless, unless that planning is coupled with determination.  Make you plan – and then do all that you can to stick to it.  Don’t wait until Next Month – do something NOW!

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How To Get Out Of Debt – An Illustrated Guide To Debt Reduction

If you want to get out of debt, you need three things – a plan, some money, and lots of determination. I can’t provide you with the money or the determination, but I can give you some ideas for how to create an awesome plan.

  • List your creditors, your current balances and your current interest rates.
    • If you want to rid yourself of those pesky smaller balances, regardless of interest rates, list your debts smallest balance to largest balanceThis method is commonly referred to as the Debt Snowball.
    • If you want to ensure that you will pay the smallest amount of interest, over the course of your debt reduction, list your debts highest interest rate to lowest interest rateThis method is commonly referred to as the Debt Avalanche.  (Source: Consumerism Commentary)
    • If you simply have a debt that you want pay off first, regardless of its balance or its interest rate, list it first.  Then, list your other debts accordingly.
  • Make minimum payments to all of you accounts.  For your credit cards, this would be the minimum payment listed on your monthly statement.  For your automobile loan, this would be the monthly payment.  Make a note of these initial minimum payments.

  • Make an extra payment to the account at the top of your list.  When sending payment, write “apply to principal” on the memo line of your check.  Using online bill pay (initiating payments from your checking account to your creditors) is a simple way to send extra payments, without having to deal with envelopes or stamps.

  • Continue sending minimum payments and your extra payment until the first debt on you list is paid off.  Then, combine your extra payment AND the minimum payment that you were sending to the first account, and send that combined amount to the second account on your list.  This is where the snowball / avalanche effect really starts to work.  Do not relax.  Remember how I mentioned that you needed a plan, money, and determination?  This is where the determination really matters.  It would be so easy to spend the minimum that you had been spending to the first account, but then you would lose the impact of the snowball.  Maintain your intensity and stay focused!

  • By now, you have this figured out.  Once you pay off the second debt, send the extra payment and the two original minimum payments to the next debt on your list.  Continue combining these minimums and extra payments until you are debt free!

Want to do even more to ramp up your debt reduction?  Don’t send one extra payment, send multiple extra payments.  Keep your eyes open for ways to reduce your interest rates.


Click here to view the No Credit Needed Online Debt Reduction Guide or here to view and download the No Credit Needed Debt Reduction Guide E-Book.

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No Credit Needed Debt Reduction Guide Free eBook Download

Recently, I published the online version of the No Credit Needed Debt Reduction Guide.

Today, I’m releasing another version of that same guide – a free eBook.

Download your free copy and let me know what you think about the guide.

Depending on your browser setup, you may need to right-click and select ‘save as’ or ‘save file as’.

The eBook is copyrighted.  Feel free to share it with your family and friends.  Please, do not make any changes to its content.

At only 8 pages long, the eBook was designed to be a simple, step-by-step guide to reducing debt.

I am not a certified financial planner.  I just enjoy encouraging folks as they work to get out of debt.

Please consider subscribing to No Credit Needed via email or rss and following me on twitter and facebook.  I’d love to hear from you via social media or here in the comments.  Have a blessed day!

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