Credit card debt is a morale killer and often confusing. You’ve got interest rates to consider and minimum payments that can cost you in the long run. And it sometimes seems like you have to be an account or financial analyst to have a chance at getting ahead.
The truth is that you can get those debts paid, you’re just going to need the right strategies, and that is the subject of our article today. In this article, we’ll give you five proven strategies and steps for paying off high credit card bills, and if you use them, then you can rest assured that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.
Let’s look at five credit management strategies that WORK!
Consider Debt Consolidation Services
Many people don’t realize it, but there is an invaluable resource to manage credit card debt, and it doesn’t have to cost you a penny. Many debt consolidation firms are non-profit, and they are there to help.
By contacting a non-profit debt consolidation service, you can provide information about your debt and your income. These experts can help you craft a personalized strategy for getting out of debt. If you do this and follow their plan to the letter, you’ll be able to not only get out of debt, but you’ll build up good credit in the process.
Most of us are experts in our field, but mistakes happen if that field is not finance. Therefore, we miss out on opportunities to restore and build credit that we didn’t even know existed. So, please take advantage of free debt consolidation experts who can lend their expertise to you towards your benefit. It’s free, after all, so you’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain!
Making an Extra Monthly Payment Is a Good Idea
So, you’ve been religiously making the minimum monthly payment, and everything should be all right, no? But, you can do much better. When you make the minimum monthly payment, you are still paying a lot in interest. And it’s still going to take a very long time to get your debts resolved so that you can start building your credit again.
Consider making an extra monthly payment.
If you get paid bi-weekly or bi-monthly, this is a viable option, and it can have more impact than you think. By making that extra payment, you’ll be forced to budget your lifestyle more frugally, but you’re also going to pay that debt off faster.
Also, consider the interest. When you have a high-interest rate, making that extra monthly payment will save you a lot of money because the interest rate is calculated from your total debt. So by reducing the debt faster with additional payments, you are reducing the amount they are charging interest on, which adds up quickly.
Transfer your Balance to a Lower-Interest Card
Many of us are drowning in debt from having more than one card, but this is something that you might be able to use to your advantage. First, check the individual interest rates on every card to find which one has the lowest interest rate.
Once you’ve identified the lowest rate, consider transferring your debt to the lowest interest card. Interest rates are the part of credit card debt that takes a bite out of your bank account, so it only makes practical sense to go with the lowest rate that you can.
It also helps your debt to feel more manageable, as you only have those one or two low-interest cards that you’ll have to focus on if you’ve moved your debt.
Combine that with our’ extra monthly payment’ strategy, and you’ve got an effective way to pay off your debts much more quickly with less interest in the bargain. Put those low-interest rates to good use. Paying higher interest rates when you have the option to avoid them is no better than throwing your money away, so start checking interest rates TODAY.
Make a Credit Card Debt Payment Strategy that You Can Stick to
You will want to create a plan not just to pay the minimum monthly on all your cards. While doing so will eventually get your debt paid, and you will end up paying an exorbitant amount of interest. It will add years to the time you need to get out of debt.
So, pick a strategy and stick to it. There are a few different ways to go about this, and we’ll give you two famous examples.
The first one is to target the highest interest rate cards first. While an extra 2% or 3% interest doesn’t look so dangerous on paper, if you crunch the numbers, you’re going to be in for a scare. Interest rates really build up over the year, and if you aren’t careful, you can end up paying mostly interest and never really touching your actual debt.
Tackle these high-interest rate cards first if you can, and you will save a bundle.
Another method that you can use is on the other end of the spectrum. For example, if you have a few cards with minimal debt, you can pay these off first to have a smaller list of cards to deal with.
This doesn’t save you as much as targeting the highest interest rates first, but it can still save you money and help your debt feel much more manageable. Planning is essential because those interest rates will be a thorn in your side for many years to come if you don’t.
There are a lot of strategies out there. Pick the one that is best for you to make an active effort in managing your credit. It’s the only way that you are going to get through this!
Check Lending Options – You Might Find a Lower Interest Rate
One strategy that gets overlooked all the time is simple. Get a loan. There are debt consolidation loans out there, and you might well qualify – all they can do is say no, so you owe it to yourself to try. If you are denied, then the next best thing is to check other types of loans to find a lower interest rate than the cards are charging.
In many cases, you can find a loan with a significantly lower interest rate than what you are paying on your cards. That means you can get it, pay off those cards, and then you only have that one debt to focus on.
Even better, with the lower interest rate, you’ll be saving a small fortune. One of the best options that you can use is a 401k loan. This is just a loan against the money you’ve already saved, so if you get approved, you’ll have one of the lowest interest rates on the market.
As a bonus, you’ll be more motivated to pay it back because it’s your own money in the first place. Just a little food for thought!
Some Final Words on Getting a Handle on Your Credit Debt
Credit debt is stressful, confusing, and a definite morale killer. Take control of your debt with the strategies that we’ve outlined today, and you can take back control of your life. First off, get some credit counseling – it’s free, so you’re getting expert advice for nothing.
Start making an extra monthly payment after transferring your debts to the lowest interest cards. They’ll be more manageable, and you’ll save a lot of money in the process. You’ll also want to be proactive and find a credit payment strategy that you can stick to. Just paying the monthly minimums won’t cut it, so this is going to be vital.
Finally, check out the lending options that are available to you, including your 401k. If you can get a loan at an interest rate lower than what you are paying now, you will be saving money. Credit debt doesn’t have to be overwhelming, and you have many options for taking control.
Use our tips, make all your payments on time, and relax… you’ve got this!
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