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To Pay Off Debt vs. Investing More, Sooner: That Is the Question

Before you decide where you stand on the "pay off debt vs. investing” debate, you need to be in a pretty stable place financially. After all, if every cent of your monthly income is being spent each month between mortgage/car payments, other bills and day-to-day living expenses, there’s nothing left over to either accelerate your debt repayment or to put towards smart investments for the future. It’s a worthwhile discussion to have, however. Paying off your debts early means that you’ve got more disposable income to save or invest, and you also get the peace of mind that comes from living debt-free. On the other hand, investing early is a great way to maximize returns, so maybe by following that route, you can end up further ahead, even if you do carry debt a little longer. That’s why it’s so important that you get a handle on your own monthly personal budget. By taking control of your daily spending and saving, you can soon discover just how much money you’re bringing in every month and be able to make the smartest decisions going forward.

Keeping Tabs

One of the biggest problems people have with planning a family budget is simply knowing where their money is going. With methods of payment getting smarter, faster and less obtrusive, it can become harder to realize what you’re spending and where. By keeping a strict and detailed log of your daily spending habits, you can then tackle the problem from an informed standpoint. Likewise, taking stock of your debt load is a must. Unsurprisingly, creditors and other lenders are hesitant to go into too many details about the real, long-term impact of the debt you’re taking on. By employing a sound debt management strategy, you can really see just how long you’ll be working to pay off that credit card or that line of credit. Armed with all of that information, combined with the ability to make informed adjustments to your day-to-day spending, you’ll be in a much better position to make, and stick to, a personal budget plan.

Putting Technology to Work for You

The old fashioned way of doing all of this would be with a pencil, an eraser and a large, heavy ledger book. You had to horde receipts and be able to access them whenever you needed, and keep track of myriad sheets of paper piling up all around you. Thankfully, personal accounting software has made those headaches things of the past. Ranging from simple to much more robust and feature-rich, family budget planning software can do the heavy number-crunching for you, leaving you to make the important, big-picture decisions, with all the information you need right at your fingertips.
By using the right piece of personal financial management software to organize your pocketbook for you and analyse exactly where you stand from a personal finance point of view, you can take total control of your household finances. Once you’ve done that, you can finally be in a position to make the important decision and declare a winner in the "pay off debt vs. investing” debate. More specifically, you’ll be in a better position to take advantage of the fact that investing after paying off debt is almost guaranteed to yield a better return. It all starts with taking control.