If you’ve been following along in my series, you have found out how we got into debt and how we started conquering that debt. We knew when we started paying off debt that we’d have to change up our lifestyle to begin getting the results that we actually wanted. Here are some real ways that we changed our budget to get gazelle intense. As crazy as some of these sound, there are people who are much more “gazelle intense” as Dave Ramsey calls it. Here are 4 Ways We Changed Our Budget to Become Gazelle Intense.
4 Ways We Changed Our Budget to Become Gazelle Intense
Homeschooled for Preschool
I’m not arguing that some kids NEED preschool and you cannot skimp on this part of your budget. In fact, we have a four year old that needs to go to preschool this upcoming year, but our oldest did okay without it. We will be adding this back into our monthly budget but it was nice having that chunk of change free for so long.
No sports for Our Kids
Yes, we’re those mean parents that didn’t put our kids in sports. Our kids are still little but they love anything that has to do with sports. Unfortunately, forking over hundreds of dollars in fees and gas money every month wasn’t going to work for us. We’ve gotten to a point now where we put our boys in t-ball during the summer, but that cost is very reasonable. If you’re serious about becoming debt free, you may have to reconsider how many sports you allow your kids to be involved in. Tip: if you do decide to do sports, here’s a few tips on how to save on Sports Equipment
Limit Fancy Dinners Out
Notice I didn’t say we stopped eating out, however, we cut way back. A few years ago you’d catch our family eating at places like Applebee’s or Cracker Barrel, but not anymore. Since our boys have gotten older they have become a lot more expensive in the food department and eating out is not cheap anymore. If we do eat out, we’re more likely to go to a fast food restaurant or just go home to fix a quick meal.
Cut Back on Everything
When you sit down and look at your budget, things really do add up. Isn’t it ironic how we “okay” eating out but when it comes to buying something we need, we put it on a credit card? When it comes to changing your budget up, you have no choice but to cut back. Take a weekend trip instead of an elaborate trip to the Bahamas. Challenge your family to eat out only once a week instead of 4-5 times a week. Look at the budget to see where you can save. How extreme are you going to be to get the results that you want/need?! Read: 60 ways to save money
Recently, I even said goodbye to my smart phone. Our family just got done paying off one vehicle and sadly had to add another larger vehicle because of adding a fourth child. Saying goodbye to my cell phone gave us a chance to throw that money at something that would benefit our family as a whole. If you’re not ready to say goodbye to your smartphone, here’s a few tips on how you can save on your cell phone bill.
What are some ways you have changed your budget to help pay off debt even faster?
And be sure to come back next Monday to read about Tips for Raising Kids & Paying off Debt!
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I just wanted to mention that one way our family has been able to upgrade to smartphones from not having any cell, or having a prepaid, was to buy from FreedomPop. The phones cost up front, but then the service is free. You get 200 talk minutes, 500 texts, and 500 MG of data a month. Often you will find a special deal on FreedomPop phones; for instance, this weekend (ending today) they have a $25 phone – the same one my husband has. There are ways to get more data, up to 1000 mg/mo. I will warn that sometimes it can be frustrating, as the talk quality is over Wifi when available. But data and messaging has been pretty reliable, and the price is right! Here’s the deal that’s available through today only: https://www.freedompop.com/offer/zteforce2499memorialEM/checkout
Note: I do not sell or resell FreedomPop. Just wanted to share a way that we’ve been able to save money and still join the 21st century! 😉 It’s so nice to have a smartphone and not be stuck with an old fliphone!
Thanks Bethany, I haven’t heard of this company before. I am shopping around for some cheaper plans, so I will check it out!!