Are you facing a growing amount of credit card debt? Are you longing to finally get control over your credit card debt but feel lost as to how to DO it?
According to 2014 statistics, the average American household is carrying over $15,000 in credit card debt. This can be an overwhelming feeling that can leave people wondering where to start. Carrying around all of this debt can feel like it’s strangling us.
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Do you feel like you are drowning in credit card debt? Taking one step at a time is key and while there is no one size fits all solution, there are some things you can do.
Here are 10 surefire ways to eliminate that credit card debt once & for all!
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Starting is the first step
Don’t continue to be swamped by the overwhelming job of getting started. Commit to starting, working hard, and making progress. Then, don’t look back.
Next, stop using credit cards
Develop a budget and stick to it, only buying what you can actually pay for right now.
Choose one card to focus on
Generally, this would be the one with the highest interest rate, this way you will be paying less interest, which will make a huge difference in the long run.
Need to see progress right away? Then choose the one with the smallest balance first
Pay that one off and bask in the glow of your accomplishment. Then, go with the highest interest rate next.
Call to ask your creditors for a lower rate
Often they have one to offer, they just wait for people to ask. Sometimes you have to play their game and show them your hand. If you have an offer from a different company for a lower rate, tell them, this may give them the motivation they need to work with you.
Take advantage of transferring your balance to a lower paying card, but only if you are fully committed to paying it off within the window of the lower rate that you have been offered
Usually, these balance transfer offers operate in a balloon format when the lower rate will skyrocket outside of that lower rate window.
Investigate lender options that will offer you loans with lower interest rates than you may be able to find on credit cards
I have a friend who did this with LendingClub.com. That will give you a place to start.
Pay ahead any amount that you can
Again, you are trying to get yourself out of your credit card debt and paying less interest on one card pays that one off faster, which then gets you on to the next card faster. Dave Ramsey talks of the debt snowball. A snowball is a great illustration of how paying off debt works as you gain momentum.
When you pay off a card, celebrate by cutting it up
It is amazing how easy it is to use it if you have it. Those who carry minimal to no debt often have only one credit card if any. Temptation is so hard for us all.
Find someone to be accountable to
Tell them your goal and your strategy. Then, check in with them often. Not only will the accountability help, but so will having someone to cheer you on as you go.
So you’ve made the decision to start reducing your credit card debt. Congratulations! Take a deep breath, do a little investigating, and develop a game plan that works for you. Remember, every little bit counts, and just getting started is often the hardest part.