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What's Haunting You?


What’s your worst fear?

Relaxing in your favorite chair and feeling a spider crawl up your leg? Being woken from your sleep by a noisy poltergeist coming to terrorize you? Everyone’s got something they’d rather not face, and Halloween can bring out the worst from your imagination.

But what if you’re already living your worst fear? Maybe you’re thinking that there’s no way a poltergeist could wake you at night… because sleep is so elusive anyways. You spend more time lying awake, worrying about your bills and money, than you do sleeping.

So how do you overcome your financial nightmare?

Start by brushing the cobwebs off your budget. Most households have a toolbox of a few essential tools – a hammer, a few nails, a pair of pliers or a screwdriver…. And a budget should be in there too. No, the hammer and nails aren’t for the coffin. You can’t live within your means if you don’t know what they are, so establish a realistic budget and put that worry to rest. The word “budget” can be its own horror, so why bother adding more to a never-ending nightmare? So glad you asked!

A budget is just a plan—and let’s be clear, it’s a plan for spending money. Some of the money you’ll spend now, like for rent or food, and some you’ll spend later, like for clothing, vacations or buying a new car. A plan that let’s you spend your money and save for the less regular expenses that you might forget about, puts you back in control. That should start sounding a little better already.

Set your fears aside further by planning how to pay off your monster. You might have noticed the new information on your credit card statement. If you didn’t, grab your statement and look at how long it will take to pay your balance off if you only make the minimum payment. As of September, this must now be disclosed on all credit card statements. If you weren’t horrified before, you should be now! Make a plan to deal with your debts. You can’t face what you can’t see, so bring your bills out of the shadows.

If you don’t know how to start scaring your debts away, you can contact a non-profit organization that can help you. They help many hundreds of people every month, so as far as ghosts in the closet go, financially speaking, they're experts.

As you have some spooky Halloween fun, think about making those bills just a ghost in your past. After all, not all the treats can be for the kids.

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