If you have a significant amount of credit card debt, you are not alone. You want to figure out how to improve your situation, or you wouldn’t be here. That is the best first step to climbing out of a deep hole of credit card debt, you have to want it.
Once you want it, and you are ready to work for it and fight for it, then you need a strategy. We’ve pulled together a robust list of the 6 most effective things you can do to put a dent in your credit card debt.
1. Buddy Up
This is something that most people do not think about. They underestimate the power of having someone for support while facing their debt problem. This can be anyone from a variety of roles in your life. Some people prefer a financial advisor, while other people are more trusting with a friend or family member. Another benefit to not going solo is it helps boost your accountability as well as your chances of reaching each goal you set.
2. Hide The Credit Card
Stop using your credit card or cards for financial emergencies, that is likely a contributing factor to how you got into debt. Instead, build a savings reserve that you would use for emergency dental or vehicle work. This way you can catch up on your debt, and lower your credit utilization as well, which makes your credit score look better. For an emergency fund, make an initial goal of one month worth of expenses, and work your way up to a 6-month cushion.
3. Pay High-Interest Debts First
This is another one that people overlook. After you get smaller debts out of the way, focus on your highest interest rate, and pay that down as fast as possible. Pay a much over the minimum as you can, while still staying current on your other obligations. This can save you thousands in interest alone on higher limit accounts and will reduce the time it takes you to pay it off.
4. Ask Your Lender For A Lower APR
This is another tactic that few people think to utilize, or realize is even possible. Simply call your lenders and ask them if they can reduce your APR. Not only will this save you money every month, but it will allow you to pay debts down quicker since you won’t need to make nearly as many payments over the life of the debt.
5. Budget Firmly
This is always one of the obvious ones, so we put it at the end, but it’s still so important that we couldn’t omit it. Budget and stick to it as much as you can. This goes for not only your spending but your debt repayment. Once you know your current bills are accounted for, figure out how much you can then use to pay off credit card debt. Your budget will be another tool of accountability, only you answer to yourself.