Paying off debt can seem like a simple thing to do. Just pay off what you can, when you can. But when you in factor daily expenses, bills, and other necessities, the task can become a lot harder.
However, it isn’t impossible. In recognition of Military Saves Week, here are a couple tips to keep in mind when looking to lower or pay off your debt:
- Make a budget. Figure out the most you can afford to pay each month to reduce your debts, then make those payments without fail. If you have debts on more than one credit card, either pay off the card with the highest interest rate first and work your way down to the card with the lowest rate, or pay off the smallest loan first and work your way up to the largest. Once you’ve paid off your debts, don’t give in to the temptation to start over-spending again.
- Get professional help. If you live on a military installation you contact the Family Readiness Center for free. Personal Financial Managers and counselors can assist you in developing a debt repayment plan. Additionally, MilitaryOneSource offers free financial counseling. Visit their website or call 1-800-342-9647 for more information.
- Contact your creditors. Contact your creditors immediately if you’re having trouble making ends meet. Tell them why it’s difficult for you, and try to work out a modified payment plan that reduces your payments to a more manageable level. Don’t wait until your accounts have been turned over to a debt collector.
- Send extra payments. Beyond making the minimum payment, send extra amount to help make a bigger dent.
- Stick to your plan. Once your balances are lowered, it can be tempting to start using available credit cards, however, it could prolong the process of reducing your debt. Resist the urge and stay focused on your goal.