This article is written by Erika Stewart.
Debt is a necessary evil in a modern economy. Mortgages, auto loans, credit cards, and other forms of borrowing allow us to build wealth over time through paying off investments that appreciate in the long run or through allowing us to buy what we need to get to work and earn a living. Yet debt can become a burden that seems unmanageable at times. Your debt, however, does not have to remain out of control. The following is a brief guide to debt elimination.
• Resolve to live within your means. The first step in paying off debt is to spend less than you make. Eat out less often, buy the cheapest insurance quotes, and take other steps to get your expenses under control.
• Learn to avoid consumer debt. Excessive consumer debt is a great burden for many people, and you can avoid it if you use your credit card only for necessities.
• Stop thinking that “it can’t happen to me.” Many people believe they will always be able to make their debt payments; therefore, they do not buy credit insurance. This is not a wise move, as this form of coverage will make payments if you lose your job or are injured, thereby keeping your debt from increasing when you don’t have the income to pay it.
• Review home and other insurance coverage. Some people pay excessive premiums for too much insurance coverage. Reevaluate the coverage you have purchased because lowering it might reduce premiums and free up cash to use toward your debt.
• Get a second job. A second job will give you more income that can be used to get out of debt.
• Start a debt snowball. Arrange your consumer debts in order from the debt with the highest interest rate to the debt with the lowest interest rate. Make the minimum payment on all these debts, and apply any extra money to the debt with the highest interest rate. Continue until all debts are paid off.
• Refinance your home. You may be able to refinance your home and get a lower mortgage payment. There are many government programs that can help you with this process. To save even more money, make sure to shop for a cheap insurance quote at the same time that you are refinancing.
• Contact credit card companies for debt settlement. If you do not have credit insurance and find yourself unable to pay what you owe, contact your credit card companies and ask to settle the debt for lower than what you owe. Make sure to get any agreement in writing so that you have proof that a debt was settled.
• Lower your interest rate. Credit card companies will often lower the interest rate they are charging consumers if consumers threaten to take their business elsewhere. A lower interest rate means that you can pay off your debt more quickly.
• Have a garage sale. Sell anything and everything that you are not using, and use the proceeds to pay off your debt.
• Use home insurance to pay off your mortgage. If your home is destroyed in a disaster, consider using the insurance to pay off your mortgage instead of using the entire sum to upgrade your residence.
These are just some of the ways to get rid of your debt quickly. Start using them today, and you will be surprised at how fast your debt disappears.