Consolidating debt with a
The following four steps will walk you through calculating how much debt you have, choosing the debt consolidation loan, setting a timeline to be debt free and teaching you how to control your spending.
You can take out a personal loan to pay off existing debts and then work to pay off that loan over time.
Some people even open a new card with a 0 percent APR for a promotional introductory period (many of these run the gamut from six to 24 months) and transfer other balances over to that card.
This can be a viable solution if you think paying the card off within that promo time frame is doable.
If you know that wouldn’t be overwhelming to you, that makes a lot of sense.
If you know that you’re not great at keeping up with your payments without someone reminding you to, looking into credit counseling or debt management options is a good idea.” According to Germano, a good rule of thumb is this: Consolidation is not a good option if your debt is more than 50 percent of your income.
While debt consolidation certainly has merits, it is not the right choice for every individual.
Above all, the approach has to match the need and the comfort level of the borrower.
“It can be really overwhelming when you have five credit cards to pay and you don’t even know where to start.
Then you can focus on repaying that personal loan, which requires just one monthly payment and, ideally, has a lower interest rate than what you were paying across multiple debts (it may not have a lower rate, but it’s in your best interest to find the lowest one you can).
The specifics of how debt consolidation works will vary by the type of debt you have and the method you choose.
Maggie Germano, a certified financial education instructor and financial coach in Washington, D.
C., said debt consolidation comes up “pretty frequently” with her clients.