Are you stressed about your debt? Are you using all your income to repay debt? Is your debt withholding you from saving and investing money? Does it feel impossible to get rid of your debt? Does it feel like your debt is locking you up in jail and you cannot escape from it?

51% of South African adults have debt and 29% is over-indebted. Debt is a reality for many people and is often causing big headaches and financial stress. It is possible to become debt-free. Follow this process:

  • Acknowledge that you are not comfortable with your level of debt. Most people know this but chose to live in denial and avoid the situation.
  • Make a conscious choice to become debt-free.
  • Set deadlines as to by when you want to be debt-free.
  • Calculate how much you will have to pay on top of your current instalment and stick to repaying the higher amount in order to reach your deadlines.
  • List all the debt you have, the interest rates and current repayment periods.
  • If there are a few smaller debt balances, focus on repaying those first. It will encourage you hugely if you can see how your debt levels are starting to reduce.
  • For the bigger debt balances, start repaying the balance with the highest interest rate first. Once that balance has been repaid, allocate that instalment to repay the next balance on your list and continue to do so until you have repaid everything.
  • Make a conscious decision not to incur further debt. Adopt a ‘Cash is king’ mind-set.

Make a choice to become debt-free, compile a plan and take action. Keep working towards it. It will not be easy and it will take time, but being debt-free will make your life a lot easier and will improve your net worth significantly.

Written by Ronel Jooste

CA(SA), Financial Consultant and Coach, Blogger and Speaker

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For more information about my financial wellness programmes visit the website