Paying off your credit card debt fast might be easier than you had initially thought. Whenever paying off any debt, you first have to develop a realistic plan achievable with your current budget and stick to it.
But what is more important; paying off the debt as fast as you possibly can — or chipping away at your debt as time passes through, setting aside a small amount every month?
The strategies below can help you decide which path to take to finish paying your credit card debt. Whichever option you choose, it’s good to follow the plan you had drawn earlier.
Debt consolidation allows you to combine the several high-interest credit card balances into one having lower rates. Therefore, you can pay off your debts faster without increasing the payment amounts. The two common ways are;
Tapping into Home Equity
Do you have equity for your home? You can use it as one of the credit card payoff options. Home Equity line of credit (HELOC) might offer lower rates than what the credit cards charge. However, keep in mind that the closing costs also apply in most cases. However, the interest payments on home equity are tax-deductible.
The other debt consolidation plan that can help with credit card payoff is the balance transfer. Although opening a new credit card might seem counterintuitive when you’ve already got one, balance transfers could help you pay off your credit card debt as long as you properly use it.
To those who qualify, using a balance transfer card is among the most active methods for the credit card payoff option. This approach involves transferring your debt to a credit card having a zero-interest period. You get an introductory 0% APR period with balance transfer cards, usually ranging between 6 months to 2 years. However, their credit scores determine the amount of debt a borrower can transfer.
Paying off the debt within the 0% interest period is the best way to use the balance transfer card properly. After the lapse of that period, you’ll be facing some interest rates. For you to be eligible for longer interest-free timeframes, you’ll probably need to have excellent credit, although fair credit options are also available.
When consolidating your credit card debt, you must control your spending to prevent piling up new debts over what you just consolidated. Let us at Freedom Debt Relief help you choose from the many debt consolidations and relief plans.
Making More Than the Minimum Payments
This is among highly active credit card payoff options that help you speed up the credit card debt payoff. By paying more than the minimum every month, you chip away a massive chunk of the credit card debt, shortening the repayment period. Those having multiple credit card debts might find it challenging to use this option. However, there are two methods they can use, as explained below.
The Avalanche Approach
In the avalanche strategy, more focus is placed on the debt interest than the balance. The credit card having the highest interest rate takes priority since it’ll cost you more by carrying the balance on the card. Even if its balance is larger and might take you some more extended time to settle, since it racks up more interest, you begin by chipping away at it.
Using this approach, the credit card balances having the lowest balances have the priority. Although the first balance might be small, you’ll be motivated to tackle the next credit card balance after finishing its repayment.
Paying the Minimum
Making minimum payments is the least aggressive approach to credit card debt payoff. Suppose your main objectives are to protect your credit card scores from getting dinged and accounts from falling into delinquency when you fail to make consistent payments.
Regardless, paying the minimum is better than missing payments, and you might even automate the credit card payments to ensure some amount is withdrawn from the bank account every month. This automation ensures that you pay off the monthly installments on time, which improves your credit scores.
However, you’ll continue accruing additional interest for the period you are carrying the credit card debt. This increases your debt load. Additionally, not all your finances go into the principal in minimum payments. Based on your issuer’s calculations, most if it might go to interest, making it harder to pay off your debt completely. The longer a lender can keep you paying, the more interest they can extract from you.
Repaying the credit card debt might feel insurmountable and prove a challenge. However, armed with the necessary information on approaching it, you can start repaying your debt hassle-free. As shown above, there are several credit card payoff options. Select one that best works for your situation. Having a solid plan that is within your budget is the first step.