The Best Ways to Reduce Financial Debt
Owe money to the bank, bills getting way too high to handle, borrowed off friends who now want to repaid? Any of this sound familiar? If so, you are wrapped in a debt chain, and this article will give you some pointers as to break the chain and become debt-free. All it takes is a firm commitment to change your habits.
Debt is defined as something, normally monetary, that we owe somebody else. It doesn’t always have to mean money, but in this article, we will focus on financial debt.
One of the best ways to reduce financial debt is to consolidate bills. If you have two or three cell phones all on different plans, put them all onto the one plan and take the savings. Pick the best plan for your needs and put everything under it.
Same thing for TV - if you’re not using all those extra channels you are paying for - why are you paying for them? Don’t take the car out for a drive to the corner store and back, it burns more gas to go 1 mile than it does to go 5 because of the start and stop process in the engine. With gas prices so high now, it pays you money to be more efficient and sensible.
Shop for groceries and buy in bulk, you’ll save more money in the long run because you will be able to make your dollar stretch further. When you go out for entertainment, set a realistic budget and then stick to it. You’ll end up enjoying yourself more, knowing that what you allocated for spending is getting you some entertainment, and you’ll stop worrying about how to pay for this or that and will get some stress-free relaxation - which is what entertainment is there for.
If you find yourself mired in store credit debt, owing thousands to store charge cards, there is always hope. Most stores want to be paid off in full - that’s normal, but they will also be willing to compromise if you are honest with them. If you call up the credit controller and tell them you can only afford x amount very month, and then you stick to it- they are quite often willing to drop the interest or any penalty rates because, in the end, if you pay them, that’s what they want to have happen - not force you to go into bankruptcy or to default on the cards.
The same thing applies to credit cards - although they want you to pay them back, again - they will work with you if you are in financial hardship and are honest with them. Keep to realistic regular payments and tell them if you see financial problems ahead. It will cost them much more to pursue legal action against you or force bankruptcy on you, and if you pay regularly, and make the minimum, you will be out of debt as long as you don’t run the card up again once it’s gone down some.
Debt consolidation is a procedure that a number of different people follow nowadays and ultimately what it means is that the person that is swimming in debt that happens to be far above what they have the ability to pay back is going to be the person that goes through a procedure that combines all of those different loans into one source of debt and therefore allows themselves to pay back the consolidated debt in a much easier and less stressful manner. Now, this is perhaps a definition that you’ve been exposed to before and while it sounds good on the top, ultimately it needs to be explained so that more people understand exactly what it is that is being talked about. We will break down a typical debt consolidation case over the rest of this article.
The financial situation for the hypothetical person here has become very bleak. They have $10,000 left on their car loan, their mortgage still has a balance of $80,000 and when you toss in all of their other credit card debt, you get to the point where they are in debt up to $100,000 all things said and done. Now, $100,000 is a lot of money and in the case of a typical family it might even be more than three years worth of their wages, so ultimately when you take a look at the $100,000 of debt, you would want some plan that would allow you to deal with it.
When you look at all of the different solutions, the first thing that you need to do in all of them is get your bearings. While the car loan and mortgage only represent two different sources of debt, the remaining $10,000 might come from as many as five or six other sources and that can make it very difficult to keep track of. So what you want to do is consolidate those debt sources into one debt source and the way to do that is to take out a home equity loan of $20,000 to pay off everything else and combine that $20,000 with the $80,000 mortgage that you already might have.
Aside from the convenience factor of only having one source of debt instead of several as was discussed above, there is also the interest rate factor. While the average mortgage will have an interest rate between 5% and 7% and most car loans will as well, credit card debt is usually going to be two to three times that amount and likely four or five times that amount if the debt is because of cash advances. So the interest rates would get lowered whenever you take a look at it that way.
Now, credit card minimum monthly repayment amounts are such that you are going to usually be paying at least 5% of your balance each month; in other words, credit card companies expect that any balance you happen to generate on your credit card can be cleared up in less than two years. Mortgages, as many people are aware, have 20 to 25 year terms and therefore the monthly repayment amount of consolidated debt will also be lower and therefore easier to manage.
With the recent outcome of wide usage of credit cards, asynchronous transfer mode system and many other financial institutions providing different lucrative sources of credit there are times when you are forced to think of a debt reduction or credit card consolidation. Now days you have options to reduce both your interest rates and time period to repay your loan amount.
Credit card debt consolidation is quite beneficial for each one holding a credit card. You might be thinking as to why consolidate a credit card debt? Where to move and how to make a choice among a number of credit consolidation companies?
The answer for the first question is probably you get much better rates when you consolidate your credit debt. As such you can save lots of money in case you hold too many credit cards. For this you should make a list of all the interest rates you get from each card and check the new rate available. It is clear that if your new interest rate is less than the average of your old rate you are at a profitable side. One more reason is that you reduce your stress and time of paying interest each time just by paying the bill once. Also by closing other accounts your credit is improved in the long run.
As to where to go for a help, you should take care of that you are not being cheated by any credit providing institution that make you fake promises in the beginning and later become a major stress related factor for you. At the same time it is important that if you go for any specific credit consolidation program you do have all related aspects very clear to you and you need to make a good research for this. Last but not the least to make a choice is indeed very confusing but if you are clear about your overall debt in detail you can contact the right professional for help. Be sure to tell them that you want the best deal and try to get the one.