It’s happened again. That dreaded email pops up: Your Credit Card Statement Is Ready.
You think back to the reasoning behind getting your credit card: to help build credit. To take advantage of a great deal. Whatever your reason, it doesn’t seem important now. Your credit card debt is dictating what you can do with YOUR money.
Well, if you are like so many others I know, you are finally ready to say ENOUGH is ENOUGH! So, now what?
Getting out of debt can be a daunting task when you first start out. That balance looms overhead and trying to pay it down seems as impossible as digging through a mountain using a spoon! But as the saying goes, a journey of a thousand steps begins with one.
Want to know a shortcut? The journey goes faster when you make those steps fun—and my favorite way to make it fun is this FREE Credit Card Payoff Tracker I Paid Off My Credit Card.
This chart shows your real-time progress and breaks it down in manageable squares. This, in turn, helps you celebrate the milestones you reach!
How to Pay off Your Credit Card Debt Fast
As with any new challenge, accountability is key to success when you’re paying off a credit card. With this chart, as you color in those squares, you can see your progress. Did you only color in a few this month? Can you do better next month?
Not only is it encouraging and empowering to see that balance fall, it’s also a great motivator. You can challenge yourself to pay off more and more. Think, Next month I can add another square!
Did I mention the chart is free? I mean, if we’re talking about getting out of debt, free is what we’re all searching for, right?!
How to Use Your Chart
This FREE Download is simple to use.
The first step is to know your total credit card debt for the card you’re tracking. You’ll use the principal balance for your chart. Divide your total balance by 100, the total amount of space on the chart. This gives you the value of each space. (You can also use this handy calculator to help you out!)
Finally, as you reduce the balance, color in the squares. Simply take the difference each month between the principal balance and color in the right number of squares!
Note: Be sure you track your BALANCE, not your payments. The chart doesn't show you how much you've paid toward the debt, but how much you've paid off, and how much is left to pay off.
I love using colored pencils or markers to color my charts now, but I started with just whatever highlighters I already had in the drawer.
If you are detail-oriented, you can even write the dates of payment in the space with a pen after you’ve colored them in. You could also write the total amount you paid that month along the side of the spaces.
Fun Ideas for Using Your Chart
The style of the chart allows you freedom to customize it to your preferences! Color each square a different color, or coordinate colors by month or payment. The options are endless! This is a simple, but effective way to motivate you to pay down that debt!
Keep your chart somewhere safe so you know where it is each month. You might prefer looking at it every day to keep you on track, so you could put it up on your wall. If you have a household binder, keep it there with your other financial information.
This chart definitely makes the journey of getting out of debt more fun—and prettier!
Have you used this tracker? Let me know in the comments!