how to: get out of debt

If you’re ready to get out of debt and boost your fiscal fitness, you’ve come to the right place. Staring at that huge stack of bills, fielding the unpleasant phone calls -- even just knowing you’re in the red can really drag you down. Luckily, we’re here to help you get back up! We have tons of advice for getting out of debt, including credit card debt help and an easy-to-use debt calculator to help you pay off debt. You’ll also find debt advice on how to renegotiate your credit card debt and ways to improve your credit (even before you’re out of debt!). Not sure where to begin? Why not give our 7 simple steps to getting out of debt at try -- they will definitely help you find your financial footing. Tackling your debt as a twosome? We’ve got plenty of debt advice geared toward couples. Learn about financial basics for newlyweds, including how to choose the right bank and when to merge your accounts. Peek into real couples’ budgets and see how they fixed their finances. And if you’re wondering where to find all that extra money to pay off debt -- don’t worry, we’ve got that covered too. We have debt help and cash-saving secrets from financial pros, and the money tips that spending savvy couples must know -- plus saving secrets from fellow Nesties. Finally, check out our tips to help you stay out of debt for good -- set up a household budget, plan your paychecks, and get credit smart.

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Money Q&A: Hiding Purchases?

Q.

The Nest Q&A

I'm not upfront with my spouse about all of the spending I do, and this has put us into debt. How can I start to get us out of the hole?

A.

To start digging your way out of debt, you've got to come to terms with how deep you are and to be honest with your spouse about these secret purchases. Why? The more you keep this a secret, the more it'll snowball into a huge problem. Do you know how much debt you have and how much your habit is costing you each month? If not, pull out your bills and add up your balances and interest rates so you can look at a concrete figure. Then start finding extra money -- by either reining in your spending or working a few extra hours -- so you can begin to pay that figure down. Even an amount as small as $10 a day can make a dent in your debt. Then start throwing that extra money toward the debt with the highest interest rates first. 

Nestpert Jean Chatzky is a money coach, the financial editor for the Today show, and the author of of five books 

-- The Nest Editors

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