December 27, 20214 Tips to Pay Off Your Holiday Credit Card Debt
If you’re struggling with holiday credit card debt, it might feel like you’re drowning in quicksand. The more you fight to get out of this high-interest debt, the deeper you get, it seems.
But there’s a lifeline! There are practical things you can do to pull yourself out of credit card debt, once and for all. These four real-life tips can help you out:
1. Stop Using Your Credit Cards.
You must understand and accept that unpaid credit card debt is bad for you financially and must be corrected. If you’ve been using your credit cards to fill in financial gaps, now is the time to break the habit for good and vow never to return.
This sounds much simpler than it is. Do these three things to start freeing yourself from credit card debt:
- Review your finances.
- Set a budget.
- Look for ways to spend with only cash on hand.
This could mean you’d need to take serious measures like removing your saved credit card information from your favorite online stores, turning your credit cards over to someone else who’ll keep them away from you, or even cutting them up, if you’re really desperate. Maybe it takes all of those things! Whatever it takes, we know you’re strong enough to do make the right decision!
2. Review Your Credit Card Rates.
Review the balances and interest rates on each of your credit cards. Your initial goal should be paying off the card with the highest interest rate first. Why? Because this is the card that will ultimately cost you the most money. Once you pay that card off completely, move on to the card with the next highest interest rate, and so on.
The one caveat is this: If you need to see instant gratification, as many people do, then pay off the smallest balance first, and work in that order. This method is okay, too, because it could give you that inspirational boost you need to stay motivated and keep going.
3. Always Pay MoreThan the Minimum.
All of your credit card statements show your minimum required payment amount. Many people make this payment without giving it a second thought – not realizing that it is likely just enough to only pay for the interest on their loan but never put a dent in the actual balance.
In other words, your principal balance likely stays the same if you only make minimum payments. To escape this endless cycle of credit card payments, you MUST pay more than the minimum payment each month. One way of doing that is to make smaller payments throughout the month and a larger payment at the end of the month.
4. ConsolidateYour Debt.
Consolidating debt rolls all your debt into a single credit card or loan. Some people do this by opening a new credit card with a high credit line and low introductory rate and transferring the balance of all other credit cards to that one account. The key is to pay off the balance before the low introductory period ends.
However, the PEFCU Visa® Credit Card is one of kind because you get the same low, non-variable interest rate for purchases, cash advances, and balance transfers if you qualify (approval based on creditworthiness) —and it’s not just an introductory rate. There are no gimmicks, and BestCards.com describes our PEFCU Visa® as “perfect for carrying balances.” Depending on your debt, you could save hundreds, if not thousands, in interest if approved.
Save this link to reference for the next holiday season: [link to How to Avoid Holiday Debt This Year]
We’re Here to Help!
We understand that credit card debt can be a true struggle for families. As your credit union, we at PEFCU want to provide you with sound advice and guidance about credit card decisions. Debt consolidation options can spare you long years of repayments at sky-high interest rates. We’re here to help you get out of that quicksand, and never get stuck again.
Visit one of our convenient locations or call us today at 1-800-226-6673 to learn more about how we can help you pay off your credit card debt and restore some degree of financial freedom.
Each individual’s financial situation is unique, and readers are encouraged to contact PEFCU when seeking financial advice on the products and services discussed. This article is for educational purposes only; It does not constitute legal advice. If such advice or a legal opinion is required, please consult with competent local counsel.