You probably know people living debt-free lives. Whether it\u2019s a friend, family member, or coworker, they likely share similar qualities with other debt-free people.In this blog, we\u2019ll look at the top ten characteristics of debt-free people and why emulating them could pay off in the long run.1. They Pay Attention to DetailsLet\u2019s say you have a gym membership, a subscription to a premium streaming service, or another recurring payment automatically removed from your bank account or credit card every month. You won’t notice them draining your money if you\u2019re not tracking those fees with an app that manages your subscriptions or checking statements regularly.People without debt monitor their finances closely and are less likely to waste money.You can do this, too; the key is just getting started.Review all your credit card statements every month.Monitor all of your spending.Add up your income.Compare the two and see where you could cut back.Revisit this budget a few times a year to stay on track.2. They Know Their StuffDebt-free people do their research. They might have an accountant, but they don\u2019t send over paperwork or sign their taxes without first looking them over.If you want control over your finances, you must learn about them. It might seem overwhelming initially, but the sense of security you\u2019ll feel understanding what\u2019s happening with your money will outweigh the cost.A great place to start is knowing your credit scores. You can get up to three free credit reports once a year. These scores will give you a breakdown of your credit profile from the three leading reporting agencies.\u00a03. They Pretend They Make LessYou can take control of your finances even if you are deep in debt. How? Try imagining you make ten, twenty, or even fifty percent less than you actually do. Then make a budget based on that reduced income. It may seem impossible at first \u2013 but try to find cuts you can make.Debt-free people live on less than they make. This allows them to put money aside for significant expenditures, like purchasing a home, retirement savings, or a simple emergency fund.By living on the belief that you make less than you do, you\u2019ll enjoy financial independence with more future options.4. They Think Long-TermYou can make smarter decisions when the focus isn\u2019t on immediate gratification. Sure, having this season\u2019s hottest shoes or the latest gaming console would be nice, but how will they help your long-term financial goals?Thinking long-term doesn\u2019t mean you can never buy shoes or the system. It just means you have to save up before you buy them.People without debt take the time to consider the financial consequences of impulse buying. They make informed decisions about purchasing items that aren\u2019t necessities.5. They Aren\u2019t Afraid to AskDebt-free people make mistakes, need help, and more. But where they differ is when it comes to having the fortitude to ask for help. They ask for lower interest rates, forgiveness for a missed or late payment, and help with understanding financial matters.They take control of their finances and aren\u2019t bashful about it.Here\u2019s a task: if you know someone who\u2019s met a financial milestone (saved $1 million for retirement, bought a new car with cash, etc.), don\u2019t be afraid to ask them how they did it.6. They SaveConsider paying yourself first if you got a significant bonus or a $25 check from Grandma. Open a savings account and deposit something each time you receive money \u2013 from your paycheck to the ten dollars you found in an old winter coat. Make it a regular habit as paying your rent or sending that car payment.Automatic deposits are an excellent tool offered by your bank. Take advantage of all the perks they have to offer.It doesn\u2019t matter how much; the point is to make it a regular habit. That\u2019s what debt-free people do \u2013 add large or small amounts every time and expand their future financial freedom.7. They Set GoalsYou\u2019ll find it easier to set money aside if you have a firm goal you want to achieve, whether that\u2019s saving for a new home, retirement, or those shoes you want so badly.Debt-free people set specific goals for themselves so they know what and why they\u2019re saving. It helps them stay on track.\u00a0Young people have a more challenging time setting long-term goals than short-term ones. But having those long-term goals, like traveling the world or owning a vacation home in the tropics, helps to add the vision necessary to start saving now.8. They Say NO!You may be tempted to go to lunch several days a week with coworkers or out to dinner with friends. You can afford it, but you know you\u2019d be better off saving the money.Don\u2019t be afraid to tell them no.Debt-free people know that turning down these more minor expenses will, over time, add up to significant savings.That doesn\u2019t mean you can\u2019t have any fun. Why not host a pot-luck dinner or pack a delicious lunch? Meet friends in the park for a walk or run instead of taking that expensive exercise class.9. They Know the Value of CashDebt-free people know the value of a dollar because they see it. It\u2019s easier to overspend when you don\u2019t visually see the money changing hands. Having to part with some cash can remind you the transaction you\u2019re making is real.And if you have a finite amount of cash, when it\u2019s gone, it\u2019s gone. Try using only physical money for a while and see how it changes your perception of purchasing.10. They Value Experiences Over \u201cStuff\u201dDebt-free people aren\u2019t focused on things. They value experiences far greater.If you ask the average person what they value, family and friends are usually high on the list. But look at their financial choices and see what they truly value.Here\u2019s an example: if you\u2019re working extra hours to pay off a fancy meal with the family, think about the tradeoff. Wouldn\u2019t you be better off having meals at home with your family on time?To become debt-free, you must shed bad habits and take on constructive ones. It may take work at first. The best things in life seldom are. But take a look at the people living free from financial burden.\u00a0Let them inspire you to live debt-free. If they can do it, so can you.The Best Time to Start is NOW!Regardless of age, job status, or debt-level, the first step is the hardest but the most critical for your financial freedom. Mercer Savings Bank is proud to be part of a thriving community and for building relationships that free people from mounds of debt.Check out the different savings account options we offer to gain an idea of what\u2019s available to you. There, you\u2019ll discover how to start preparing for a debt-free life.