10 Tips To Help You Get Out Of Debt
If you are in debt, you are not alone. According to CBS Money Watch, credit card debt in the United States is set to reach $60 billion this year alone. This may seem like a lot when considering the country as a whole, but the number is even more surprising at an individual level.
NerdWallet advises that the average US household credit card debt is $7,529 according to the Federal Reserve. But, credit cards are not the only form of debt that Americans are dealing with. NerdWallet advises that the average mortgage debt in the U.S. is $155,361, and the average student loan debt is $31,946.
The Launch FCU Guide To Paying Off Lingering Debt
If you find that you are continuing to collect debt, and have no idea how you are going to pay it off, developing a step-by-step strategy is not a bad idea. At Launch FCU we care about your financial well-being. That is why we developed this guide to help you pay off your lingering debt so that you are able to go beyond and reach your financial goals.
- First and foremost you should create a budget and stick to it.
Set a monthly budget that is realistic and includes all of your monthly expenses. Think about creating an Excel spreadsheet or an expense tracking spreadsheet to help you track your expenses, or use a budgeting application like Quicken or Finance Works. The hardest thing to do in terms of following a budget is differentiating between needs and wants. This means that you may have to wait on those new pair of shoes.
- Balance transfers can be extremely helpful.
If you are paying a high interest rate on your credit card, think about switching to a credit card with a lower interest rate. Apply for a credit card with Launch FCU. Our credit cards have no annual fee*, and no balance transfer fee*. If you are not sure what your interest rate is on your credit card, make sure to check on your next statement. You may be surprised by how much you are paying in interest. In addition, if you transfer your balance from a high-rate credit card to a Launch FCU credit card you can set up automatic payments in BillPayer so that you never have to worry about missing a payment again. Click here to apply online today!Click here for additional disclosures
Click to view Visa Credit Card Agreement.
- Think about consolidating your debt.
Consolidating your debt could mean that you end up paying less interest, and could help to get you out of debt faster. Use this calculator, or call us at 321-455-9400 (inside Brevard) or 800-662-5257 (outside Brevard) to see if consolidating your debt to one loan would be beneficial to you.
- Pay off your most expensive debt first.
If a balance transfer is not the best option for you, pay off your credit card with the highest interest rate first. Paying off debt is just like anything else in life. The hardest tasks are always the most painful, but once they have been tackled it’s smooth sailing.
- Consider paying more than the minimum balance when your budget allows.
In order to really make a dent in your debt level you will need to pay more than the minimum balance on your statement each month. According to US News, paying the minimum balance only takes 2 to 3 percent off of your outstanding balance, and only prolongs your debt payoff.
- Think about making more frequent payments.
When you set up your budget try to budget weekly or bi-weekly payments instead of monthly payments. This will allow for you to pay your debt off faster. If you are not able to pay your bill weekly or bi-weekly, think about paying 1.5 to 2 times your minimum payment on your monthly statement.
- Temporarily stop buying items using credit until you have your finances under control.
If you have to run to the store, think about stopping at an ATM beforehand to get cash and leave your credit card at home, or simply bring your ATM/Debit card to the store for purchases. Remember, one of the many perks of being a Launch FCU member is the ability to use your Launch FCU ATM/Debit Card at any Launch FCU branch ATM and any Publix Presto ATM machine free of charge. To find the closest Publix Presto ATM near you click here.
- Put your tax refund or holiday bonus towards your debt.
We know it is very easy to spend your tax refund or holiday bonus on personal items, but putting this money towards your debt will payoff in the end. Improving your financial well-being is much more important than that new flat screen TV!
- Use some of our tools and resources.
At Launch FCU we strive to provide our members with tools and resources to help you keep track of your finances. Think about checking out: CreditTrack, Debt In Focus,Financial Milestones, Money Management Planner, and Money Smart. For details on each of our financial tools, click here.
- Above all, never hesitate to contact us.
Give us a call at 321-455-9400 (inside Brevard) or 800-662-5257 (outside Brevard) if you have any questions relating to your debt. Remember, you are not alone. We are here to help and are dedicated to helping you find a way to improve your financial well-being.
*Foreign transaction fee of 1.00% of each multiple currency transaction in U.S. dollars and 0.80% of each single currency transaction.
© Copyright 2015 Launch Federal Credit Union. All Rights Reserved
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