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Credit Card Debt Solutions

Most people have credit card debt for one simple reason: they spend more than they earn. However, there are other reasons why you might have credit card debt, such as a medical emergency, a one-time emergency expense, rising costs, or impulse control. No matter how you got into debt, there’s a solution. Review the situations below to find the right credit card debt solutions for you.


If you spend more than you earn, the first step is discovering why. It could be because your mortgage has recently shot up, leaving you with little money for other expenses. It could also be because you make a lot of impulse purchases on your credit card. If you have high fixed costs, you should consider scaling back on luxuries like cable television, movie rentals, and eating out.

If you spend too much because you like to buy stuff, then you need to learn to ask yourself if it’s something you really need. Wait two weeks before making any purchase. Chances are you won’t really want it anymore. Once you control your spending, you’ll have an easier time paying off credit card debt.

Large One-Time Expenses

If you have credit card debt because of a large one-time emergency like car repairs, your first goal is to pay off that bill as quickly as you can by reducing spending in other areas. Once that’s done, use the extra money to build an emergency fund. Tap the fund for true emergencies, like car repairs or emergency room visits, so you don’t have to go into debt again.

Extended Medical Emergency or Illness

If your family is experiencing a major medical emergency or long-term illness, sometimes credit card debt is the only way to get by, especially if the primary earner is the one who is sick. In this case, your best bet is to negotiate with the doctor or hospital to reduce the medical bills. If the bills are more than you can ever reasonably pay, you may have to consider bankruptcy. Medical bills are the reason for 50% of all bankruptcy filings.

Extended Job Loss or Other Financial Hardship

Many people find themselves relying on credit cards to pay basic expenses after they lose their jobs. If you’re one of them, your first step should be to reduce every possible expense. Cancel cable, cut back on clothing and food purchases, don’t take vacations, do whatever it takes to cut your spending. If you have student loans, apply for forbearance. If you have a mortgage, find out if your lender can also extend a temporary forbearance. If you still can’t pay off your credit cards, consider contacting a credit counseling service for help. They’ll review your finances and may recommend a debt management plan, debt negotiation, or bankruptcy.

Once you get back on your feet, dedicate as much money as you can to debt repayment. You should also establish an emergency fund and continue to spend wisely so that you never find yourself deep in debt again.

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Justin has 5 years of experience as financial adviser; his key areas are consolidation, debt relief, mortgages etc. For more free articles and advice visit
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Understanding Debt Management Services

When some people become overwhelmed with debt and find it hard to pay their bills, they often turn to a debt management service. These services can often be found through credit counselors, and you should only use a service that you’re comfortable with. This service should be more concerned with helping you than with making a profit.

What Do Debt Management Services Do?

The debt management service transfers payments from their clients to the creditors. In return, they may take out a commission from the transfer or will receive fees from the lenders. While debt management services may work with a wide variety of different loans, they usually focus on debt that is unsecured. They are different from credit counseling services. Those with auto loans or mortgages are usually not referred to debt management companies.

Consolidation of Your Debts

Many debt management services offer debt consolidation loans. All of your bills and outstanding debts are combined into one bill. Once this has been done, it is up to the debtor to make the monthly payments on the loan. If the debt management service reduces the interest or balances on your loans, this can effect your credit. Many lenders will view you as being a high risk client when looking at extending future credit. Despite this, the effect on your credit is less than things such as continuous late payments. A debt management service is also an excellent alternative to filing for bankruptcy.

What’s In It For Them?

It is common for debt management companies to earn up to 10% of the money transferred from their clients to the creditors. This along with the fees paid to the debt management companies from the creditor can lead to very large profits. As can be expected, some companies will try to abuse their power by persuading clients to sign up for a service which is driven by profits instead of helping them manage their debts.

Save Some Pennies For Those Rainy Days

Because many people find it hard to adapt to a debt management service, emergencies may come up where money is needed. It is important to find out what will happen if you miss payments before you commit to using the service. Each company is different, and some companies may have large penalty fees for customers who don’t make their payments on time. With the rise of debt management services, people have often been advised to look for institutions that are non-profit. The idea was that organizations for profit would focus more on profits than with helping clients manage their debts.

Profit or Non Profit?

Despite this, many debt management services that are for profit will advertise themselves as being non-profit. Using a non-profit organization doesn’t guarantee you will get better service than you would from a for profit organization. It is best to use services that are accredited with the National Foundation for Credit Counseling. Accredited services are not likely to charge outrageous fees or attempt to take advantage of their clients. Before you look at a debt management service, you should call your creditors to see if they can lower your interest rate.

Getting a Cheaper Rate

Many credit card companies will lower your interest if you call them and inquire about it. It may also be possible to use a standard lender as opposed to a debt management service. Under some circumstances it may be necessary to file for bankruptcy. You could also get an unsecured loan to pay off all your debts if your credit is good.

You should also be wary of debt management services which are late making your payments. If this occurs you should immediately call them and get an explanation. Your credit can be damaged if they make your payments late, and if they are charging you high fees you should cancel their service and look at other options.

Joseph Kenny writes for the Personal Loans Store and offer more information on debt consolidation loans and other loan topics available on site.
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Debt Consolidation in the Perspective of Debt Negotiation

Debt consolidation versus debt negotiation are two options that are available to you if you need debt assistance. When your monthly bills become too much for you to handle, it makes sense to use debt consolidation or debt negotiation for solving debt and credit problems.

Debt Consolidation

Debt consolidation services have prearranged debt repayment plans with most credit card and collection companies. When you sign up with a debt consolidation company you are offered a lower overall monthly payment based on a lower interest rate they have arranged with the creditor.

This payment is lower than what the credit card companies offer you, saves you money every month and is often the best way to consolidate debt.
One benefit of a debt consolidation repayment plan is it will stop you from getting harassed by your creditors as long as you make the new, lower monthly payments.

The downside of the debt consolidation repayment plan is that you have to cancel all credit cards that you include in the plan. You are also charged your first payment you make toward the program and an additional monthly administration fee. This administration fee ranges from flat fees of $10-$50, while others charge a $5 fee for each creditor. That means you’ll pay about $30 a month that doesn’t go to paying off your debts.

The debt consolidation program benefits you if you have high interest rates or have higher credit card bills than you can manage. Some people like to make only one payment to one company for all of their debts.

Debt Negotiation

Is sometimes referred to as debt settlement. This is most often offered to people who can’t handle a debt consolidation program. If you can’t make the minimum payments of a repayment plan or haven’t made payments in the past 3 months, a debt negotiation program is the next step for solving debt and credit problems.

One benefit of a this program is you stop making payments to your creditors. The debt negotiation company either takes monthly payments from you and keeps it in an account, or lets you keep the money in your own account.

While you are making these monthly payments to the debt negotiation company, they negotiate with your creditors for a lower payoff of around 40-50% of your total amount of debt. Once the negotiated settlement is agreed upon with your creditors, the debt negotiation company makes a one time payment to them.

A downside of this program is, it lowers your credit score for as long as you are in the program. However, most debt negotiation companies require the creditor make the credit report show paid in full so it doesn’t show up as a negative on your report once your account is settled.

Some debt negotiation companies include a credit repair service that will remove the negative items caused by the debt negotiation program. You pay for this service as part of their program.

Now that you have an idea what debt consolidation versus debt negotiation is choose which one will work best for solving debt and credit problems for you.

Facts to Consider About Debt Relief

Are you like the thousands of Americans who feel very overwhelmed by debt? Sometimes, relief seems like it is nowhere in sight. If you are looking for debt relief and would like to get out of debt, there are a few options to consider.
The process might seem complicated, but if you are dedicated at becoming debt free it can be very simple. It is possible to get the debt relief you need but it takes some time and patience on your end. Be prepared to budget your finances, keep track of what you’re spending and start saving money.
If you are looking for debt relief help there are a few things to consider. If you are a home owner, you can take out a Home Equity loan. The equity in your home can be used towards paying off any debts that carry a high interest.
A home equity loan is one that is secured, so you will be able to get reasonable interest rates on your loan. People who are looking to get out of debt, if they own a home they are very fortunate since the lower rates can help them to manage their debt.
Another option to consider is trying to renegotiate the terms of your credit line. By talking with creditors, you might just be able to work out a negotiation that is favorable for the both of you.
If you let them know what terms you are able to pay them on, they might be willing to lower them. It really is in their favor if they help you. If you have to file for bankruptcy, then they will never get paid for the account.
If possible, try to pay more than your minimum balance every month. This is the quickest form of debt relief, if your budget allows you to do so. By paying the minimum every month you will be in debt for years!
This will result in thousands of dollars in interest fees alone. If you can pay more each month, you will get out of debt faster and of course avoid paying extra in interest.
There is credit counseling available for people who need it. Consider working with a debt settlement or debt consolidation company. Debt consolidation is when the company you are working with will arrange for you to have one, lower monthly payment based on a lower interest rate. You do have to cancel all accounts with your credit companies.
Debt settlement is usually considered by people who feel that the consolidating is not right for them. If you are unable make your minimum payments to the debt consolidation program, then negotiating those debts is usually the next step.
If you decide to use a business to help with your debt relief, then make sure you do the research. Find out if there are any complaints and make sure you are dealing with a reputable company.
Know up front how much they will be charging. The quotes will be free (or they should be) from these companies, but it will cost you something to have them work to settle your debts.
Just do your research, know what the company is providing and what they will do for you. Get it all in writing, and get started on finding the debt relief you deserve.

Christina Costa, a freelance writer, recommends for debt relief where you can receive help with all of your personal debt settlement needs in seconds! Visit
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Christians Debt Solutions Can Change Your Life

Christian debt solutions can help a Christian to avoid bankruptcy through negotiations and consolidation of financial obligations. Some of the services they offer can teach you to learn to live within a budget. In cooperation with creditors you can work to lower interest rates and reduce the principle. The work of credit recovery involves the consolidation of invoices, and learning what the word of God says regarding debt- “No one should have nothing but love for a debtor,for who loves another has fulfilled the law”(Romans 13:8).
Negotiation of cash below a balance includes less interest. Consolidation can lead to a lowering of interest rates and a monthly payment of lessl instead. Credit Repair can help to improve your credit ratings, so that lenders offer lower interest rates and interest. A Christian debt repayment plan can help their finances in accordance with the churches teachings.
Consumers who are in financial difficulties need to pray and ask God to help them successfully manage the debts and to avoid future debt once all their bills are paid. You should consider a solution of the debt as a Christian solution to financial problems. In today’s world there are several options for those who need help. There are many companies including Christian Debt Solutions. The children of God often seek help from the companies listed on the word of God, the ethics and are honest and trustworthy. Those who pray for you are the kind of friends who to go ask for help.
Unexpected help sometimes occurs when life places the children of God in situations that are undesirable and stressful. Society encourages consumers to spend. Poor money management overruns good intentions. To many, the credit card offers great value and convenience. Most consumers apply for credit cards and find debt in a few months, which was created by a person that was employed and a good consumer. Once interest rates begin to climb and they become unemployed then is almost impossible to pay the bills. Other things that can contribute to the financial downfall can be higher house and car payments, fuel and the increase inliving costs and try to pay phone bills, cable bills, utilities. A Christian debt solution can be a good starting point for the search for answers on how to deal with creditors and reduce debt related stress.
One of the first things that most people think when they have financial difficulties is they don’t want to be left in bankruptcy. Chapter seven bankruptcy allows a person to cancel their debts including interest. Before a consumer can declare bankruptcy, he or she has to attend a class of consumer credit in a certified course. A certificate on completion of the class must be brought before the court. Bankruptcy can be very expensive, a lawyer must be retained and legal expenses must be paid. After the failure may be on the debtor of the credit report. This will be remembered as a public register of seven to ten years. A Christian debt solution can offer consumers a range of options for dealing with financial problems, so that he or she is not required to file for bankruptcy.
The Regulation and negotiating skills are necessary for dealing with financial obligations. Companies such as christian debt consolidators offer these services. Some creditors go to work much earlier to solve some of the problems to help the debtor avoid filing for bankruptcy. Companies will work in close collaboration with many creditors to negotiate a settlement for less than what is actually owed. In addition, the lender agrees to put an end to all fees and interest. Settlementscan be anywhere from 40% to 75% of what is actually owed. If the customer can furnish a lump sum to be paid immediately in an agreement to accept a lesser amount. It may include the negotiation of an agreement, in which the debtor pays monthly until the debt is completely paid in full. The important thing to remember is that this type of agreement requires that the customer must be ready to ensure that the payments are made on time or creditors may not honor the agreement.
Learning to live by a budget is essential to overcome the problems caused by poor management of money. A Christian debt solution employs professionals who understand how to create a budget for the customer, so that he or she will change their buying habits. The customer must be ready to write all the expenses and track every cent and budget all revenue and total debt. If the person has less than is in the budget he or she must do without in order to save elsewhere. Spending too much on food means less money for other things like entertainment.
Consolidation of debt is another service, which can help consumers pay for the purchase of a loan. Saving for a monthly payment and no more. We hope that the interest on the loan will be much lower while the debts are being paid off. When the monthly payment is significantly less, it is easier to manage getting the total debt paid off. You could apply for a second mortgage if there is enough equity, or you can use a credit line to pay the bills. Real estate property loans tend to have lower interest rates compared to personal loans. Christian debt consumer solutions provide valuable information to make the best decision and may provide the maximum benefit in the long run.

Finding the Ideal Debt Solution

Debt happens to everyone. Some of it is good debt – like home or student loans. Unfortunately, most of it is bad debt – credit cards, high-rate auto loans, high-rate personal loans, appliance loans, and other debts. You have two debt solution choices: permanent and temporary. For long-term debt reduction, use both.

Budgeting: A Permanent Debt Solution If you’re truly dedicated to getting out of debt and staying there, there is only one permanent debt solution – stop spending more than you make. Obviously most people can’t expect to buy a house or go to college without incurring debt, which is why those debts are considered good. But you can stop acquiring bad debt if you reorganize your finances.

It’s difficult, but you can teach yourself to break away from our accumulation culture and stop the spending cycle. First assess your necessity categories like food, housing, transportation, and childcare. Although you can’t cut those expenses, you can make better choices.

Start clipping coupons for products you regularly buy, but don’t use a coupon to buy a product you wouldn’t otherwise use. Be willing to try other brands if they’ll save you money. Often a generic brand is manufactured by the name-brand manufacturer, so why not save a few dollars and get the same product for less? If you drive a gas-guzzling car, trade it in for a fuel-sipper. Chances are your payments will be the same, but you’ll save a lot on gas.

You can also significantly cut your non-necessity expenses. For example, if you have cable TV, do you really watch those premium channels? If not, cancel them. You can always re-subscribe once you’re out of debt, but you may discover you don’t want them anymore. If you have a good-quality pair of jeans that you like, do you really need a new designer pair just because they’re on sale? Train yourself not to make impulse purchases or respond to advertising tricks and you’ll be much happier in the long run.

Debt Consolidation: A Temporary Debt Solution Once you’ve cut your expenses enough to the point where you can afford debt payments that will reduce your debt rather than maintain it, consider another debt solution like debt consolidation. Credit card interest rates are very high, often 18% or more. If you qualify for a debt consolidation loan, you could cut that rate in half. Although adding your debts together may produce a debt that’s alarmingly high, you’ll also enjoy the satisfaction of watching your single payment quickly shrink that debt.

There are two keys to successfully reducing debt through debt consolidation: 1. Pay as much as you can every month, and 2. Stop creating new debt. Once you consolidate your debts, cut up the cards you used to make the original purchases. Stop buying new non-necessities until your debt is gone.

Once the debt is gone, carefully look at your budget. Set aside a portion of your previous debt payment to create an emergency fund. That way you won’t get back into debt if you suffer a medical emergency or illness, need emergency car repairs, or your house needs maintenance. Set aside another portion of your former debt payments for retirement. If you’ve been living comfortably while paying your debt, there’s no need to return to your former spending level. Living on less than you earn and saving the difference will create true wealth.


Justin has more than 5 years experience as a financial adviser, his key areas are loan consolidation, debt relief, mortgages etc.
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Debt Consolidation Loan: What is this Program?

A debt consolidation loan program combines traditional debt negotiation with a debt consolidation loan so the borrower can get a reduction on his debt via negotiation while at the same time getting lower rates and a single and lower monthly installment with a repayment schedule suit for his budget.

Debt Negotiation

When you fail to repay a loan, the minimum payments on your credit cards or even regular bills, you usually incur in penalty fees and extra interest rates that contribute to a continued growth of your debt. Creditors tend to increase the amount that is owed to them by these means because they have additional costs when you fail to repay but also because they know that eventually they may be forced to resign a portion of the money, thus by increasing your debt they make sure to get as much as possible.
However, since this is a common practice among lenders, borrowers can easily fall into a debt trap with all those penalty fees and abusive interest rates. Debt consolidation agencies provide expert negotiators that know exactly how to deal with creditors and can agree with them a solution to your debt problems. If you have to file for bankruptcy, then they won’t be able to recover but a small portion of their money, so they are more than willing to show flexibility when a negotiator gets in touch with them.

Agreements can reduce your debt by up to a 60%. The main reduction is obtained by eliminating the interests charged over the debt’s principal and the capitalization of interests. Sometimes you can even get a reduction on the principal itself. And though it is not a reduction, you can get an ease on your debt by rescheduling the loan payments into longer repayment plans.

Debt Consolidation Loans after Negotiation
Once a reduction on your debt is achieved you can get even better terms by applying for a debt consolidation loan. The money you get from the loan will be used to cancel outstanding debt so you’ll end up with a single and lower monthly payment. By doing so your debt won’t be a huge burden anymore and you will afford the installments without making sacrifices. There is however, a limitation that you should be aware of.

Secured and Unsecured Loans

Unsecured Consolidation Loans cannot be used to consolidate secured debt. If you have different kind of debt you must resort to either a unique secured consolidation loan to cancel all your debt or an unsecured consolidation loan to consolidate unsecured debt and a refinance loan in order to consolidate secured debt like mortgage loans and home equity loans.

Not All Debt is Bad

So you are in debt-who isn’t these days? We live in a society that encourages people to go into debt. Credit card commercials tell us that a trip to Jamaica is just what we need, regardless of whether we can afford it. (That’s what your gold card is for, right?)

Loan brokers want us to borrow up to 125 percent against our home equity. Even the federal government just had its first balanced budget in a generation and now faces the enormous task of paying off over trillions of dollars in debt.

Yet not everyone is in debt. Many people know how to deal with money. Their debts are manageable, and they have money in the bank. That sounds nice, doesn’t it money in the bank? That is what you deserve. In order to get there, however, you are going to have to change some of your thinking about money and learn a few new methods of dealing with it.

Why Are You in Debt?People who are not in debt think about and treat money differently than the rest of us. They know a few things about money and debt that escape the rest of us. Let’s call them the “financially literate.” If you can begin to relate to money as they do, you will be well on your way to a life that is not only debt-free, but also prosperous. What we hope to do in this book is to show you some of their secrets so you can adapt a few of these ideas and tools to help you get out of debt.

Do not feel too badly if you are not good with a dollar, a lot of people aren’t. Money literacy is not taught in schools, and too often parents are too busy trying to dig themselves out of their own financial hole to help much either. Yet, unfortunately for many of us, we learn more about money from our parents than anywhere else. The good news is that learning how to get out of debt and become more financially literate is not all that complicated.

The first step in the process is to figure out how you created so much debt, because if you don’t figure out how and why you got yourself into this pickle, you might get out of debt, but you certainly won’t stay out. So the first question to ask yourself is: Why did you go into debt in the first place?

Sometimes going into debt is unavoidable, but often it is not. When money is tight, you have several options; going into debt is just the easiest. Instead of choosing more debt, you might have decided to work overtime and make more money, or possibly you could have tightened your belt and spent less money. Debt was not your only choice.

There are many reasons people go into debt: some are good reasons, and some are bad. It doesn’t matter. Did you buy luxuries you could otherwise not afford? Did an illness or a divorce set you back financially? Was debt your way of dealing with some other sudden, unexpected expense? When you look at the reason why you went into debt, the important thing is to notice whether your spending habits follow a pattern. If you can see a pattern, you need to address that pattern as much as the underlying debt.

Consider Mark and Diane. They both make a good living: he’s a psychiatrist, and she’s a psychologist. They have two kids to whom they are devoted. They send both to private school, which costs a total of $15,000 a year, and both kids go to summer camp. This expense adds up.

Mark and Diane don’t buy luxuries, they don’t travel much, and, except for the kids’ expenses, they are very frugal. Yet the only way they can pay for everything is by going into debt. They use their home equity line of credit and credit cards to stay afloat. Although they would like to move to a less expensive neighborhood, they can’t because they have no equity in their home, so they are stuck.

What are they to do? If they are going to get out of debt, something in their lives is going to have to change. The private school is going to have to go, camp may be out, or they are going to have to start making more money. The same is true for you. If you want to get out of debt, you are going to have to identify why you went into debt and change that behavior or pattern.

Good and Bad DebtDebt in and of itself is not a bad thing. Both of us (the authors) were able to start our own businesses because of debt; Steve began his own law practice, and Azriela began her own entrepreneurial consulting business. So we understand what debt is and why some debt is great debt.

Debt allows you to do things you otherwise normally could not do, such as start a business, go to college, or pay for a home. Debt constructs buildings and funds investments and entire corporations-even the government is funded by debt. The trick is to foster debts that help the cause and banish the ones that don’t. Not all debts are bad debts.

Good DebtDebt that helps you, enriches your life, is manageable, and is not a burden can be called good debt. For example, student loans are good debt if they enabled you to get through school and further your life goals. They are bad debt if you dropped out of medical school after one year to become a writer. A good debt helps; a bad debt hinders. We want to help you get rid of that bad debt.

Other examples of debt that may be considered good include:1. Home loans. A mortgage can be a great debt. Not only does it permit you to own your own home, but it also allows you to build home equity. People who are financially savvy earn interest and equity. People who are not financially savvy pay interest and create money for others. For example, charging groceries means that you will pay about 17 percent interest on items that will be consumed within a week. A financially literate person would never do that.

2. Car loans. A car loan can be a fine debt because you get something long-lasting out of the debt. If you need a nice car for your job (if you are a real estate agent, for example), a car loan may be considered good debt because it helps you in your career. However, a car loan that you cannot afford is a bad debt because it detracts from your life.

3. Business loans. If you can service the loan, and it helps you make more money, the loan is good debt, but if the loan is nothing but a source of problems for you, the debt is bad.

4. Credit cards. Credit cards are fantastic. They are convenient and easy. They can help finance a business or even medical emergencies. The problem with them, as you probably know only too well, is that it is too easy to fall under their siren spell and get in over your head before you know it. That’s when they begin to hurt your life more than help it.

Bad Debt BluesHow do you know if your debt is good debt or bad debt? Easy. Bad debts cause stress. You sleep poorly because of them. They cause fights and foster guilt. Supreme Court Justice Lewis Powell was once asked to define obscenity. Hard-pressed to come up with a definition, Powell uttered the famous line, “I know it when I see it.” The same could be said for bad debt: You know it when you see it, and it certainly can be obscene.

Bad debt seems impossible to pay back. You create bad debt when you charge things you don’t need or when you borrow for things that you consume quickly, such as clothes, meals, or vacations. The things quickly disappear, but the debt has a nasty habit of sticking around, seemingly forever. Bad debts can become very bad debts because of interest and penalties. For example, if you buy a CD player for $200 and don’t pay it off by the end of the year, and your credit card company charges a usurious 20 percent APR (20 percent per year), you owe $220 by the end of the year. If you do this with five items, you owe $1100, and that’s a lot of money.

Money TalksTight for money? Here are some simple ways to save a little extra: Don’t use ATMs at other banks and avoid $2 user fees; cancel your movie channels on cable and save about $20 per month; put all of your change at the end of the day in a jar and save about $50 a month; hold a garage sale and make about $200; cancel your cell phone and save $50 a month.

You can create bad debt when you agree to pay these crazy interest rates that some creditors charge, because the debt seems to grow exponentially. Credit cards are the prime culprit, but they are by no means the only one. High interest can also come with personal loans, business loans, or unpaid taxes.

You know what the bad debt dance looks like, anyone reading this book does: New bills are coming in before you’ve cleared out those from last month. You’re surprised to find that the phone bill is still unpaid. Somehow the dentist was never sent his check. You know what past-due notices look like. Your Visa and MasterCard bills include late payment penalties. The hardware store sends a letter telling you you’re past due and requests that you send a check at once. There is more month left at the end of your money, and payday seems far away. Worst of all, these things don’t surprise you anymore.

Avoidance is a common coping mechanism to deal with a budget that doesn’t balance. The problem is, it can create even more problems than you already have:

Your property could be repossessed. The finance company can come take your car. The electronics store can come take its TV back. You could get sued. If that happens, your wages could be garnished, or your bank account could be levied upon. Imagine your surprise when you go to get that $1,000 out of your checking account to pay your mortgage and you find that it has been seized by one of your creditors.

A lien can be placed on your real estate. Failure to pay a bill now means that a creditor can get a judgment against you and force you to pay it later when you sell your house, only then you will pay it with 10 percent interest per year.

Loss of services. You could lose your insurance or your utility services if you avoid paying those bills.

Yet, as much as you have been avoiding the problem, the truth is that your debts are neither crushing nor hopeless. They are simply a problem-one for which there is a solution. But no one ever eliminated a problem until he or she recognized and admitted that there was a problem. You began to do that the moment you read this articles. As you read it, you will need to begin to formulate a debt-reduction plan that will work for you. As you do, you need to determine which debts are necessary and which are not.

Debts You Want to KeepSteve, one of the authors of this book, is a bankruptcy attorney. One day, an old acquaintance named Bill came into his office and said that he needed some help getting out of debt, but he also wanted to avoid bankruptcy if at all possible. They talked, came up with a plan of action, and Bill went on his way. About four years later, Steve ran into Bill again and asked how things were; Bill relayed the following story.

Bill had $30,000 in credit card debt and was behind two months on his mortgage when he left Steve’s office. That day, Bill finally decided that something had to change. He wanted to pay everyone back, put some money in savings, and keep his house. His mortgage was his largest, and favorite, debt because he loved his house.

Bill’s first order of business was to prioritize his debts. Wanting to save his house, Bill called his lender and found out that it had a program that would enable him to roll his mortgage arrears onto the end of his loan. He was therefore able to keep his most important debt and focus his energies on getting rid of the debts he didn’t want anymore.

Bill put together a credit card repayment plan. He started living a bit more frugally, making some extra money by moonlighting, and paying more on his credit cards than the minimum. He was diligent, but not always perfect. Although it took him several years, he finally did get out of debt. He also kept his house and even created a little nest egg. Bill did it, and you can too.

Debts to Get Rid OfIf you want to prosper financially, there are plenty of debts that you will want to wipe out. The most obvious are those where you are paying high interest and penalties, things such as credit cards, lines of credit, taxes, or any other debt that is much higher than inflation. In this articles, you will see how to formulate a plan that will enable you to get out from under these burdensome debts. But as you contemplate this plan, you also need to prioritize certain debts and pay them on time:1. Rent or mortgage. Make paying your rent or mortgage a top priority. Payments on a home equity line of credit or second mortgage are also essential because you can lose your house if you don’t pay.2. Car payments. Make the payments. If you don’t, the car will be repossessed.3. Utility bills. These services are important, and the bills usually have heavy late payment penalties.4. Child support or alimony. Not paying these debts can land you in jail.5. Taxes. Taxes may be put off for awhile if necessary, and we show you how to do so later on in the book, but if the IRS is about to take your paycheck, bank account, house, or other property, you should set up a repayment plan immediately.

The First Rule of Holes: Stop Digging!The goal of this articles is to help you get out of debt within the context of making your life work. You will not be asked to make radical, unreasonable changes in your life because doing so rarely works. Instead, important, sometimes gradual, small but significant changes can make a big difference.

If you are going to start getting out of debt, you have to stop going into debt. One way to start is to begin to wean yourself from the credit card teat if you think that is part of your problem. You don’t have to cut up all your credit cards; that would be impractical and unreasonable. Start slowly, but build up to it and get strong. You can do it. The only way to stop going into debt is to stop going into debt. You might as well start now because the sooner you start, the sooner you will get out of debt. The longer you wait, the longer it will take.

We will show you how to easily trim your budget (well, almost easily) so that you need not incur more debt to stay afloat. But begin now. You are going to have to stop sooner or later. Down the road you will see that this is one of the most important steps you can take in getting out of debt. You will thank yourself for this gift. Remember the first rule of holes: Stop digging!

Long-Term GoalsNow is the time to begin to think about your long range financial vision. What is it you hope to accomplish by getting out of debt? Changing some habits?

Paying off your MasterCard? Probably what you really want is a less stressful life, one that’s free from money worries. But you can have even more. Getting out of debt is one thing, but prosperity is another thing altogether.

You have read this once already, and you will read it again in this book: If you don’t begin to do some things differently, to change the way you think and treat money, you might get out of debt, but you won’t stay out of debt. If you do make some simple changes to your thinking and your behavior, not only will you get out of debt, but you also will get ahead. You will get what you deserve: a life of abundance.

The Least You Need to Know1. Going into debt for essentials makes financial sense; doing so for nonessentials does not.2. Not all debt is bad debt.3. You may want to keep debts that enhance your life and get rid of the rest.4. Stop adding to your debt right now.5. Cultivate a long-term plan of action. offers comprehensive guide to credit reporting, including information on repairing or rebuilding your credit history.


 offers comprehensive guide to credit reporting, including information on repairing or rebuilding your credit history.
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Advice for Deciding When to Consolidate Student Debt

When consolidating student debt, the loans principal won’t be modified. Nevertheless, you’ll be able to save thousands of dollars on interests and reduce your monthly payments by extending the loans length. Moreover, consolidating at a fixed interest rate will let you keep the same monthly installment amount through the whole life of the consolidation loan.

That being said, consolidating student debt is not always worth the trouble. Only if you can obtain a substantial reduction on your debt or if you can make your monthly payments more affordable you can say that consolidating student loans is appealing enough. In order to determine this you may want to follow the following tips:

Consolidating during the grace period

Be especially careful not to consolidate during the initial grace period unless the consolidation loan includes another grace period or you can do without it, because otherwise you will have to start paying your debt right away. Grace periods usually last between 4 months and a year. During this period, the borrower is not required to start paying off the loan. The main reason for this benefit is that the graduated student might need such a time to find a job and get used to a new lifestyle.

Interest Rates

If you can get a lower interest rate than the average of all your outstanding loans, that would be great. However, you’ll probably get an interest rate just a bit higher than the average interest rate of all your student loans. The reason why you would want to consider consolidating even with a higher interest rate is that the length of your loan will be extended and the loan installments reduced. Besides, the interest rate will be locked so if market conditions worsen you would still be paying the same amount, as opposed to federal student loans which rates

fluctuate with the market.

Contact government agency for cancellation
Prior to consolidating your federal student loans or other government loan, you might want to contact the government agency that issued the loan. It is possible to fully cancel the loan without reimbursing the money if certain requirements are met. Since you have nothing to loose, before searching for a lender to consolidate your student debt, make sure you can’t get the government to condone the whole or part of the debt. After consolidating, you won’t be able to apply for this kind of government forgiveness.

Set aside special loan programs

There are certain loans that you might want to maintain with its original terms. There are loans where the government pays for the interest and you only pay for the principal, others where the loan can be renewed upon cancellation or even before. If you consolidate this kind of loans with the rest of them you’ll loose this special attributes. So make sure you won’t have use for them before rushing in. There is always time for consolidating, so you might as well make a conscious decision on this matter.

Debt Consolidation is Possible for Non-Homeowners

There are different ways of consolidating debt and even without the aid of a consolidation loan, a debt reduction of up to 60% is easy achievable. There are professional negotiators that can agree with your creditors new repayment programs along with reductions on the interest rate you pay for your outstanding debt and sometimes even a cut on your debt’s principal.

Debt Consolidation Agencies

Before contacting a debt consolidation agency you need to be aware of what they are capable of doing and compare that with your financial needs. Using the services of a debt consolidation agency is a decision to be taken as last resort. Once the fact that you’ve got into a debt consolidation program is reported, your credit history will reflect this and your ability to get finance will be considerably diminished.

However, if your current bills, loan installments, unpaid credit card balances and all other debt have become an unbearable burden, then a debt consolidation program might be your only chance to avoid other more extreme measures like bankruptcy.

A debt consolidation agent will be assigned to your case. He will gather all the information available about your credit, your outstanding debt, your income, your assets, etc. and with that information he will design a plan. He will contact your creditors and negotiate with them. Since your creditors want to get paid, they’ll agree more flexible conditions and they will resign to charge high interests on your debt. They know now that if a consolidation agent is taking care of your debt chances are that if they don’t cooperate, they might get nothing.

There are mainly two different options after negotiation. You may obtain new repayment schedules with lower rates and lower monthly payments you’ll be able to afford or sometimes the agent agrees with the creditors a reduction on the whole amount of debt in exchange of immediate cancellation of their bills, balances and loans. If the agent takes this second path, he probably has arranged for you to get approved for a consolidation loan. The money obtained will be used to repay the new negotiated debt and you’ll end up with a single monthly payment: The loan installments.

Consolidation Loans

With the aid of a debt consolidation agency, it is much easier to get a consolidation loan in order to cancel your debt. The lender knows for sure that the money will be used to repay and cancel all your debt. Probably, the agency will arrange for the money to be directly transferred to the creditors. The lender will then be your only creditor which lets him in a privileged position when it comes to recovering his money if he has to take legal action in order to do so. And that is the main reason why with the help of a consolidation agent non-homeowners can get approved for debt consolidation loans too.

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