I have $1,000 in credit card debt, a $12,000 car loan and I owe my parents $20,000. The loan from my parents is causing stress because all I can afford to give them is $200 a month. They don’t need the money, but they’d like to see it paid off soon. What can I do?
If you’re not already living on a written, monthly budget, that should be the first step. You say your parents don’t need the money, right? So, they’re not living on bread and water without your payments. I think the biggest thing causing them stress is the fear that you’re being irresponsible and living without a plan.
Make out a simple, realistic budget, and sit down with them to explain what you’re doing and how you plan to address things. Start a debt snowball, and begin knocking out your debts smallest to largest. By the time you pay off the credit cards and the car, you’ll be able to give them lots more than $200 a month.
Just ask mom and dad to stick with you a while longer. I think it will make them feel better to see that you’re serious about getting your finances in order!
Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. He’s authored four New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover and EntreLeadership. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 5 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.