With so many different sources of credit available, it is all too easy to find yourself buried in debt. If you have a hard time keeping track of your loans and credit cards, debt consolidation may be the answer. By combining your debts into a single balance, it is a great deal easier to keep track of how much you owe.
Debt consolidation works best when applied to credit cards. If you have significant balances on various cards, you’re probably paying way too much in interest and could benefit greatly from a debt consolidation loan. See if you can’t combine all of the debt into one payment with a favorable interest rate, and limit your credit card spending once that is accomplished.
It is important that you read the fine print of any debt consolidation loan before agreeing to it. For instance, let’s say you get a home equity loan. Should you default on this loan, your lender can take your home from you. Prevent this from occurring by reading the fine print.
Find out whether a debt consolidation company is a “home equity loan” provider in disguise. Some debt consolidation companies really just want you to take out a home equity loan. Don’t let this be you. After all, your home is the most important thing you have. If you find out a company wants you to take out a loan on your home, move on.
This method of paying off your debts is typically sought after because people need to reduce their monthly payments to have enough money to pay their other bills. You also can reduce your interest costs and pay off your debts in full faster. If you aren’t interested in all three benefits, this isn’t the method for you.
A family loan can help you consolidate your debt. This is risky, but it can improve your chances of paying off your debt. However, you may find that this is truly the only method of repaying your debts. You should only use this strategy if you are determined to pay back this loan.
Consider the pros of using a debt consolidation service. After you’ve qualified, you just need to pay one low monthly payment.This makes it easier to budget and you can watch the debt get paid off faster. Interest rates are pre-set via the creditors so your plan offers low-fixed interest rates until you’ve completely paid it off. If you struggle with making payments or have fallen behind, creditors may waive over-limits or late fees in the future or re-aging accounts if you’re using a debt consolidation service. You can even forward creditor calls to them.
Don’t assume a credit transfer offer will save you money when consolidating debt. Look at the fine print. Often there’s an initial fee that you need to pay (it can be multiple hundreds of dollars), and there’s usually a 12-month or 18-month limit to the offer. At that point the interest rate may increase to higher than it was before. Do the math before you say yes to make sure that the deal works in your favor.
You need to consider if debt consolidation is truly the answer to all of your problems. If you don’t change your spending habits, it won’t actually better your future. You have to commit to the process entirely, from saving money for emergencies to not spending on things you don’t really need.
Carefully consider location when you are choosing a debt consolidation company. While you should check certification and licensing anyway, remember that not all states require licensing. Two of these states are Florida and Maryland. So, if the company you’re considering is in one of these states, proceed with careful caution.
Inquire about education and help a debt consolidation company can give you. After your arrangement is over and you’re on your own again, you need to make sure that you can move forward smartly. Your debt consolidation company may offer some types of classes or assistance so that you can continue to do well.
Make sure the payments you send to your debt consolidation agency will go to your creditors. Pay the fees you owe to your debt consolidation agency separately. If your creditors are not receiving all the money you send to your debt consolidation service, consider using a different debt consolidation service.
It is always better to try to repair your debts without bringing on additional debt, such as a debt consolidation loan. If you can figure out ways to pay off what you owe, even if it is with the help of a credit counselor, do it! It will save you time and money.
Always do research with the Better Business Bureau before choosing a debt consolidation firm. They are one of the best places to go to help confirm that the company you are considering is out for your best interest. If the company has complaints on record, then it’s best to move on and consider other options.
Know that debt consolidation only works if you don’t accumulate more debt afterwards. If you go back to living off your credit cards, then all you’ve done is worsen your situation. Instead, map out a plan of action for how you’ll live after the debt consolidation. For many this means paying via debit cards or cash, so you always are living with what you have.
Almost all debt consolidation is non-profit. The IRS gives tax breaks to companies who offer services to clients who are consolidating debt. Non-profit does not mean free. These companies do charge fees for their services. They have to pay their employees, file paperwork and have other costs associated with running their business.
Debt consolidation is not a miracle cure for your financial problems, but it can help. The fewer debts you have, the easier it is to improve your financial situation and rebuild your credit. Start using the advice you have just read to explore the advantages of using debt consolidation in your life.