It’s not simple to get out of debt. Keeping up with monthly bills and saving for a rainy day, much alone paying the minimum monthly payments on your credit card, can be difficult at times.
Countless people are grappling with debt as a result of the pandemic’s persistent knock-on effect. However, no debt situation is intractable. There may not be an easy or quick solution, but there is always a way out. Here are 4 strategies to help you get out of debt.
CHECK ALL DEBTS ARE ACCURATE & LEGAL
First things first, when it feels like you’re labouring under the weight of several debts, you might find you blame yourself for the situation, and accept any charges levelled against you as fact and verbatim.
But it’s crucial to ask yourself; is everything in your account accurate and legal? There are plenty of examples of banks mis-selling products, such as PPI, and charging unfair fees and add ons. Check if everything you owe is genuine, and if you can reclaim any of these extras.
USE ANY SAVINGS
Don’t be shy to spend some of your savings to pay off loans with high-interest rates. Using cash reserves to pay off debt is a good move because it prevents interest from accruing on big balances.
However much having some extra cash in your bank account may feel comforting, the truth is that those pounds aren’t working for you, especially with today’s record-low interest rates. Better to pay off debts that are costing you even more than you owe.
Doing so will help you maintain a better credit score, too, which will be useful in the long run when you’re looking to make larger purchases with more favourable terms.
GET A LOWER RATE OF INTEREST
Make a call to your creditors to see if you can get a reduced interest rate as some creditors will be ready to lower your interest rate based on your payment history and account status, if your circumstances have changed for the better and as long as you’re in full time employment.
As the guys at Protected Trust Deed Scotland tell us, such an arrangement is ”most useful for people who are in debt but have access to a regular income that can be put towards the money they owe”.
PAY DOWN YOUR DEBTS WITH YOUR TAX REBATE
While it may be easy to spend any tax rebate you receive on a high-ticket item or a trip, it would be a wiser financial move to pay off part, or all, of your debt. Consider the advantages of a single lump sum debt payoff method in terms of lowering your monthly payments.
Instead of enjoying the short-term delight of purchase, you’ll reap the benefits of a lower debt load for the rest of the year and for years to come.
SPEAK TO A PROFESSIONAL
To speak to someone for help, there are several debt advice charities operating in the UK right now who can give you free, non-judgmental guidance on your financial situation.
You can access free, personalised advice over the phone at:
- National Debtline – 0808 808 40 00
- StepChange – 0800 138 11 11
- Debt Advice Foundation – 0800 622 61 51
- PayPlan – 0800 280 2816
- Money Advice Service – please use their website for contact details
These charities all have online help, too. Also, check out these 6 simple hacks to save money each month for more advice!