In modern lives, almost nothing creates as much tension and worry as unresolved credit card debt. Ever increasing debt loads can break apart families and ruin credit, but more and more ordinary consumers nevertheless find themselves helplessly distraught by mounting bills. Most Americans are urged by peer pressure and the surrounding culture to take out a credit card as soon as they are sent their first application, but it's all too easy to begin spending beyond their means once given the opportunity. Soon enough, they've reached the limits of their balances and find that the credit card companies are only too eager to offer new accounts and worsen the problem. Almost before they know it, borrowers discover they can no longer meet the minimum payments of their various debts and have to take out cash advances from one card just to pay the interest accumulating on another. It's a desperate spiral, and, once the borrowers realize that they're no longer in control of their finances, they have to do whatever's necessary to eliminate the debts caused by credit cards.
Of course, this is easier said than done. Credit card companies make lingering debt as attractive as possible while the potential solutions seem either too costly or ruinous to the borrower's credit. Nevertheless, help does exist, and we've a number of ideas that could help any borrower attempt to take hold of their situation and eliminate debt burdens as quickly as possible.
Ways To Get Rid Of Credit Card Debt
As with most problems, there isn't only one single method with which to eliminate credit card debt. Below, we've compiled a few different suggestions that borrowers may wish to employ in order to better their situations. None of them, taken alone, would remove a significant debt burden, but, at least, they should be starting points with which debtors can begin the process of separating themselves from lenders and getting their finances back on track.
Most obviously, borrowers should seek to get rid of their credit cards - cut them up, throw them in the fire, and bury the ashes. Alas, with modern life, maintaining some credit accounts may be necessary. If the borrower feels that they honestly cannot control their own spending, they may try to leave the cards with friends or family or in a safety deposit box at their bank. Some borrowers even hide the cards from themselves at the edges of an attic or the most difficult to reach spaces of their basements.
Once spending has been (even artificially) curtailed, the borrower should start examining ways to repay the debts. Ironically, considering unnecessary purchases were likely the cause of their original problems, the same items that were bought without consideration may now help pay down the debt load. Through E-Bay or Craigslist or any number of on-line auction sites, consumers can rid themselves of still valuable possessions they rarely use, and, with the money from those sales, they can pay down their debt amounts. Every little bit is needed, after all, and many debtors report that letting loose the roots of their financial obligation in order to reduce the overall burden helped inspire their new discipline.
After all big ticket items otherwise using up space have been sold or auctioned off, the borrower should start analyzing their credit card bills and figure out the best way to start eliminating debts. There are two different ways of thinking about this. Some debt relief professionals will argue that every borrower should first tackle the smallest balance. This makes some sense, of course. Getting rid of any credit account that shows funds owed will have immediate beneficial effects upon FICO scores and the reports that the three credit bureaus compile.
On the other hand, though, an equal number of debt specialists would counsel the borrower to take care of their higher interest loans before doing anything else. After all, the primary concern should be to lessen the overall debt load - credit repair will happen after the funds owed have been done away with - and high interest rates are the greatest cause of ever increasing debt loads.
Besides the debt settlement or debt consolidation alternative, the borrower really only has two things that they can do - lower their spending and raise their incomes. Maintaining a disciplined household budget should take care of the first part, but, if borrowers truly want to eliminate debts, they'll have to do whatever's necessary to pump up the cash flow. In many cases, they'll have to take second jobs or start a small business they can manage during the weekends. This won't be easy and could heighten family tensions, but the borrowers have landed themselves in this situation - and the other options (debt collection, foreclosure, property seizure) are far worse. One way or another, they will have to figure out a path leading away from debt, and, however irritating the plans may seem in the short term, they'll be happy they took the chance after all debts have been cleared.
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