Getting A Handle On Debt
For many people, it is tough to make enough money to pay bills. If you have had a setback due to a medical problem or if you did not live within your means, you may be a bit of financial distress. Unfortunately, it is very easy for this to escalate month by month, making the debt become larger with time.
Here are some ways you can try to get a handle on your debt problems in an attempt to get bills paid, avoiding bankruptcy in the process:
Rely On Cash Purchases
The main thing you need to do to get out of debt, is stop relying on the use of credit to make your purchases. Only spend what you can afford. If you continue to use credit cards to pay bills and buy the items you need to survive, you will never get out of debt. Finance charges will become higher with each month that you charge new items without making large enough payments on the card. Make it a habit to only carry cash.
Make A Few Calls
If you call some of your creditors, you may be able to make a deal with them to make payments on debt you owe. This is especially true with medical bills. Hospitals and doctors would rather be paid a little at a time than not at all and they are usually willing to work with people who owe them money, if you call to explain why you cannot make full payments.
Many times, you will not need to make interest payments. Calling will help keep your name away from collection agencies, ruining your credit score.
Credit Card Debt
Call your credit cards to see if you can negotiate a lower interest rate. If you tell a credit card company that you are going to transfer your debt to a lower interest card because their rate of interest is too high, they may lower the rate in an attempt to keep you as a customer. Check around with all of your cards to find out what the policy is for debt transferring and use this to your advantage when calling.
If you sound like you actually called around, the credit card company will be more likely to lower your rate. If you find a good deal with a card to transfer the debt to a lower rate, go ahead and move the money onto that card. You may be able to pay the debt off since the finance charges will not be as high.
Start Cutting Corners
Think about where you spend your money every month. Do you really need that cup of coffee every day from the deli? Can you live without cable for a few months so you can allocate the money spent for it on other expenses?
Make a list of the bills you pay each month along with the amount owed. Keep a running total of the amount of debt you owe. Seeing this number go down can help relieve some of the anxiety you feel about your bills. You will know that you are making a difference in the way you are spending.
Knowing how much you need to survive each month can be a real eye-opener. Seeing the numbers may help you to think about ways to cut corners in the home and around town so bills can get caught up.
Know When To Get Help
If you try for several months to lower the amount you are paying out each month, and you find that the debt amount you had tallied up when you wrote your list is not going down, you may need to ask for help. Hiring a bankruptcy lawyer may be in your best interest to avoid having your credit totally ruined. You will be able to have a professional help you allocate money to pay off your debt so you can get a fresh start.
To learn more, contact a company like Michael D Doyle Attorney at Law with any questions or concerns you have.