November 22, 2017

Fighting Credit Card Debt

saving-money-protectionSince the beginning of the 2008 recession in the United States the economic reality of many middle to low income families has not been a pretty sight. More and more families have struggled to meet their monthly mortgages, rents, utilities, groceries and essential living expenses. You may be struggling as well.

Unemployment and rising medical expenses have driven many people to use credit cards as a “plastic” safety net. With high interest rates on credit cards, debt can keep growing until you are experiencing a debt snowball.

The US Census projects that Americans will carry $870 billion in credit card debt in 2013.

Some may think that their lucky charm is a debt protection product which will cover expenses in times of disability. In 2009, consumers spent about $2.4 billion dollars for this type of protection.

Self Assessment

There really is no lucky charm when it comes to managing your credit card debt, but you can easily figure out if you are having difficulty managing your personal finances.

Personal Questions To Ask Yourself

  1. Are you living paycheck to paycheck?
  2. Do you have little or no money put aside in a savings account?
  3. Are you unable to pay your creditors on time and are starting to receive collection calls?
  4. Can you only afford to make the minimum monthly payment on your credit cards?
  5. Have you taken out new loans to pay off existing debts?
  6. Do you hide credit card bills from family members?

All of these factors can lead you to even worse problems, which will eventually, if not corrected control your life in ways you had never dreamed possible. Low credit scores can affect employment, the ability to borrow money at a reasonable rate and increased interest rates on your current credit card balances.

Solutions

The easiest solution to credit card debt problems is to get serious about saving money and paying off your debt. Going to a website like www.utahsaves.org will let you take a pledge to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth over time as well as encourage others to do the same. So far, 310,000 people have signed up and taken “The America Saves Pledge.”

Benefits of signing up are that you will receive text messages to encourage you to save money. You have access to money management workshops. You will have access to personal financial counselors. You can also share your own money saving tips and qualify to win $25 if your story is selected.

While there, you can set up your own personal savings goal, choose the amount of money you want to save and how long you have to achieve the goal.

Getting Help

For consumers that are feeling overwhelmed by debt, you can call the National Financial Counseling Center at 1-800-351-4195 for a free confidential consultation with a Certified Financial Counselor. Plan to get out of debt today, not tomorrow!

About Sherry Tingley

Owner of One Click LLC founded in 2007. Brigham Young University and Punahou school graduate. Recognized by Mint.com and Intuit.com for excellence in personal finance blog content.