Debt-free In The New Year? Steps To Get Out Of Debt Faster
If you’re one of the millions of Americans who added “be debt-free” to their New Year’s resolutions, check out these simple steps to help you get out of debt as quickly as possible.
- List your debts and interest rates. It’s time to be honest with yourself. Write down all your loan balances and their interest rates, which should be listed on each statement, in order of rate from highest to lowest.
- Focus on the highest rate debt. The highest rate is costing you the most, so make additional payments whenever possible to pay it off quicker. Continue making minimum payments on your other loan balances to avoid additional fees and penalty rates.
- Transfer your balances. Consider opening a lower rate credit card or personal loan and using it to pay off your higher rate balances. Redstone offers credit cards with 0% APR for six months on balance transfers and no transfer fees to help you save more.
- Pay yourself first. It may seem counterintuitive to put money in savings when you’re trying to pay off debt, but having cash on hand in case of an emergency will keep you from going further into debt. Try to keep at least $1,000 in an emergency fund for unexpected expenses.
- Spend less. Write down your budget – how much money you’re bringing in and where your money is going. Look for ways to cut down, such as eliminating cable, skipping the clothes shopping or buying generic groceries. Put some of this savings into your emergency fund.