How To Get Out Of Debt On A Low Income

Saving money and getting out of debt on a low income can be a very stressful time in anyone’s life. It is common to feel helpless, and like you are in a constant cycle that will never let you stay afloat for a while. Although it is easy to get overwhelmed, there are strategies and techniques you can use to put your mind (and wallet) at ease. Read on for tips on how to get out of debt on a low income.


Top Expenses

  • Sit down, and map out where you are spending the most money.
  • Once you put it down on paper, you will see not only where you are spending too much money, but also where you should be spending more (or could spend more if you needed/wanted to).
  • Most likely, your top three most expensive monthly costs will be your home, your transportation, and the food you buy. If you have children, your child’s expenses may take the place of the car expenditures.
  • You may have credit card debt or medical bills, but these are most likely not the most constant or heavily priced items each month.

Let’s start by looking at how each of your top three expenses can be cut down to help you get out of debt on a low income.

Housing And Shelter

  • Have you ever heard about stories in the 1930s where people, usually immigrants, would offer their work or skills for a free place to live? Even though times have changed, there is someone out there who will take you up on this if you are desperate enough.
  • One helpful company, Work Away, helps coordinate people looking for work to people who are offering a place to stay in exchange for work.
  • Work Away is a company that not only connects potential employees to homeowners, but also allows the workers to travel all around the world.
  • If you have friends or family that would be willing to open their homes to you for a predetermined amount of time, why not take them up on it so you can save some money in the mean time? Perhaps you can offer to bring “something to the table”, literally or figuratively, while living with them.
  • One great way to get out of a debt on a low income is renting out rooms in your house. Essentially, you are letting other people pay off your mortgage. Who wouldn’t want that?
  • If at all possible, consider downsizing or moving to an area where you get more “bang for your buck”. Although the process is a pain, the extra money each month may pay off in the long run.
  • Owning a car can be something that swallows up your paycheck each month. Although it seems necessary, you may be able to become a “one-car household.” Talk this through with your significant other, and if money becomes that tight, how could you do it?
  • Use the car services Uber or Lyft.  Although these services aren’t free, they do prevent you from buying gas, repairing a vehicle, and making car payments.
  • Another way to get out of debt on a low income would be to utilize public transportation, when possible. Traveling on city buses or riding trains can be the cheapest way to get places. Although it takes more coordinating, it can save you a lot of money down the road.
  • Consider carpooling with someone at work that lives near you. Alternate days or weeks so you can literally cut your mileage and gas costs in half.
  • While having children is never cheap, you can still get out of debt on a low income if you have kids.
  • Consider buying cloth diapers that are reusable, rather than the disposable ones that get extremely pricey.
  • Call your cell phone company and ask exactly what services you have turned on. You would be surprised to learn just how many things you aren’t using.
  • Buy your groceries close to the time you get paid. This allows the monthly budgeting to occur earlier in the month.
  • Consider having a garage or yard sale. Although it does take a lot of work, if you do it right, you will make more money than you think.
  • Don’t want to go through that hassle? Use the app, Offer Up, to sell things locally in a safe way.
  • One way to get out of debt on a low income is to switch to the lowest interest rate credit cards.
  • Call hospitals and see if you can sign up for any charity programs.
  • If you owe money to a business, call them to extend the deadline. The worst they can do is turning you down.

Transportation, Cars, And Traveling

Other Ways To Save

Dealing With Debt