Image courtesy of Steven Depolo
Image courtesy of Steven Depolo

If you have an overdraft facility and use it regularly then it could be costing you more money than you think. An authorised overdraft is cheaper, so if you do use an unauthorised one a lot then try to negotiate an authorised overdraft, or increase yours so that you can save some money in fees. This will help, but it is better to work out a way to pay it off altogether.

An overdraft will be paid off automatically when you put some money into your account and once there is enough in there it will clear it completely. However, you may then find that you get short of money again and borrow it all over again. Some people work like this, going month to month getting an overdraft and then paying it off again. This can become a big problem as eventually, due to the fees, even if you spend the same amount of money each month, you will get to a situation where there is not enough money to pay off the overdraft.

It may seem that you create a problem to solve another, but it can be worth considering borrowing money to pay off the overdraft. If you can find a loan which has a lower interest rate than the overdraft then it could help you, as long as you do not go overdrawn again. Remember to calculate the difference between the two rates to see if it is worth it. Do not just compare the interest rates but also look at the fees too.

Of course, it is far better if you can pay off what you have borrowed and not borrow from another source to do so. This will take some work, but it is also possible. You firstly need to find out why you keep going overdrawn. Is it because you are buying things that cost more money that you own or that you just do not have enough income to cover the necessities. You will need to either cut down your spending or find a higher source of income, although doing both in both cases could be wise.

It may seem difficult to cut down your spending, but it can be done, even if you do not think that you spend that much money. It is good to note down everything that you spend money on and see whether you can cut back anywhere. You may be able to make some big changes by swapping energy suppliers or television and phone packages. You could swap the places you shop to cheaper ones and perhaps buy less things. You need to be aware of what you are buying and look at it to see where you could reduce your spending. It can be hard, many people do not like cutting back, but it can make a big difference in the long run.

Earning more can be equally difficult as it could mean a change of jobs, working extra hours, working a second job or doing freelance work. However, it can lead to a better income and mean that you do not need to cut back what you are spending so much.