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Five ways to tackle credit card debt

by , 25 September 2014

Credit card debt can seriously affect your finances, so you owe it to yourself to eliminate it as quickly as possible.

You may have a perfectly valid reason for getting into debt in the first place, but that doesn't matter. Right now, you need to focus on paying off your debt before acquiring more interest and becoming overwhelmed.

But how do you do it? How do you tackle credit card debt effectively?
 
Here are five ways to eliminate credit card debt for good.
 
1. Work on paying off one card at a time
 
If you try to tackle too many credit cards at once, you’re likely to become discouraged and give up. Start with the credit card with highest interest rate and continue paying minimum on your other cards, until this card is paid off. The key is to start with one card and pay it off, then move on to the next one, and so on.
 
2. Double your minimum payment
 
If you’re still paying the minimum on your credit cards, it’s going to take you many years to pay off your debt. Try to at least double the minimum payment. Paying more than the minimum means that you will owe less interest in the future. It also improves your credit score and lowers your debt-to-income ratio.
 
3. Avoid using your credit cards for regular purchases
 
Unless it’s an emergency, do not use your credit cards for regular purchases. You can’t expect to eliminate debt by creating more debt.
 
4. Stick to a monthly budget
 
If you keep spending money in an uncontrollable fashion, you’ll never manage to pay off your credit card debt. In order to succeed, you need to create a monthly budget and stick to it. Include the amount that will go towards paying off your debt in a timely manner and make sure you always pay it first thing after receiving your paycheck.
 
5. Request a lower interest rate
 
You always have the option of calling up your creditors and kindly asking them to lower your interest rate. If you always make payments on time, you can qualify for a lower interest rate. You may need to put your negotiation skills into practice, but it will all be worth it once you pay off your credit card debt sooner.

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Five ways to tackle credit card debt
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