MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – When it comes to credit card debt there is some good news for consumers. Americans as a whole are slowly working their way to being better savers.
A survey from Bankrate.com found nearly 40 percent of Americans are one bill away from disaster.READ MORE: Twins, Lynx, And Gophers Take Home Weekend Wins
So, what does that mean? Well, it means that those rainy day funds are running dry or non-existent for some.
That same survey found nearly 58 percent of the workforce has an emergency savings fund, that’s up 7 percent from last year. However, there are still a lot of people who are trying to dig their way out of debt.
WCCO’s Ali Lucia decided to take a look at ways to battle debt and found four ways to get you seeing green.
As a director at Consumer Credit of Minnesota, a local non-profit, RayeAnn Hoffman has been helping Minnesotans work their way to a more financially free lifestyle for the last 10 years.
Hoffman began Consumer Credit of Minnesota with her brother John.
Her first piece of advice – stop excess spending.
“Items that you really don’t need in your every day living. If you really want that new TV, is it a need or a want?” Hoffman said.READ MORE: St. Paul Police Report Rapid Increase Of Overdoses, Warn Of Synthetic Opioids
As far as budgeting goes, Hoffman advises clients to just make it but stick to it.
“Then look at the other items that you want to spend money on and set limits for all of those items,” Hoffman said. “I will point out things that they could cut back on, but ultimately I leave it in [the client’s] hands.”
As for any unplanned expenses, it’s important to prepare. Perhaps put those funds in account that isn’t easily accessible.
“If they’re use the bank that they right now, set up an account where they can’t transfer money into easily, or go and set up an account with another bank,” Hoffman said.
She said that ensures those rainy day funds continue to increase.
According to CBS Money Watch, nearly one-quarter of consumers have more credit card debt that in their emergency fun. So, when it comes to the plastic Hoffman encourages people to pay them off one by one.
“If you’ve got several credit cards, look at the either highest interest rate or the lowest balance and concentrate on paying that off first,” she said.MORE NEWS: 'It Was Just Nuts': Severe Storms Leave Residents With Damage, Debris, And Outages