If you’re like many Americans you are drowning in personal debt, looking for a way out. The BDC is a free resource to help you change your lifestyle, use reliable budgeting techniques and get rid of debt as part of your journey toward financial freedom. The BDC is an exciting, practical and easy way to join together and overcome major financial challenges.

Use these tips to Start taking control of:



When is the last time you created a household budget and stuck to it? If you have a budget, is it aligned with your life goals? A budget is a critical tool for life advancement.

  • Understand that the goal of a budget is to enable you to spend less than you earn so that you can save money to support the things you really want out of life.
  • Track your spending for a week or a month by writing each and every purchase down. Review spending to determine what you spent on wants versus needs.
  • Review your credit report to get a better sense of your overall debt and your payment habits. Your credit score will be higher when you have good habits. Do this annually.
  • Review income sources. If you don’t have a bank to help track income and savings, open an account at a local bank or credit union.
  • Create life goals that will help you prioritize and create financial goals.
  • Create a financial budget and stick to it by reviewing it often. The goal of this budget is to first ensure you are not spending more than you earn and next to make your money work for you.
  • Use SMART goals to create a realistic spending plan that will help you stick to your budget.
  • Ask a good friend to become your budget coach. Let that person know what your goals are and ask them to help keep you on track by doing things like shopping with you or reminding you when you are missing an opportunity.
  • Start talking to your family or friends more about budget and financial issues. Not talking about money helps hide problems and keeps you in a victim mode. Talking about money also helps others bring you information such as good financial investments.
  • Take advantage of free services offered by banks, credit unions and other financial lenders or investors, including budget tools.
  • When creating a budget, consider creating a hard rule to save 10 percent of your income first, and then see what’s left to spend in other important categories such as basic needs, debt, emergencies and investments for retirement.
  • Create an emergency fund, of at least $3,000,and only use this for true emergencies so that you will not contribute to your debt.