I Will Never Get Out of Debt, Will I? – Joni

By on June 22, 2012
I Will Never Get Out of Debt, Will I? – Joni

“Dear Steve,

Credit card debt totaling about $50,000. High interest rates. Payments made on time but I want to consolidate and lower interest rates.

I have 2 credit cards with high interest rates (17%+). One is about 17K and the other nearly 10K. Both are not willing to lower their interest rates even though I pay regurlary every month. At this rate I will never be able to get out of debt. What do you recommend ?

Joni”

Dear Joni,

Actually, you will get out of debt if you make it a priority and approach it with balance and prudence. The getting out of debt process is simply the application of paying more than the minimum balance and doing it consistently. While at the same time you also need to be saving money to protect you so that surprise exposes don’t wind up back on the credit cards and erode all your hard work.

If your credit score is above 700, which you can check for free at Credit Karma, then a logical first step would be to evaluate an unsecured debt consolidation loan through Lending Club. In the interest of disclosure I am both an investor and help fund loans and have a relationship with them. The debt consolidation loan will not cover all of the balance, but a good chunk of it. Depending on how good your credit score is you may be able to pay off a large amount of the debt at a much better interest rate.

If you decide to go this route, please post your loan number in the comments section below and I’ll help to fund your loan as a favor.

This approach will have the least impact and may actually improve your credit report and credit score since the accounts will not be reported as closed. Once you pay off the debt, keep those credit card accounts open to help boost your credit score by maintaining a long track record with the creditor.

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Since you can afford your regular payment but are looking for a lower rate, you can investigate a credit counseling approach using a debt management plan. In the debt management plan your cards will be closed but creditors may lower your interest rates and that appears to be the break you are looking for. You can click here for credit counseling information.

I’d investigate those options first and then come back and update me. Let’s talk about what you learned and you can let me know if those solutions will work or we need to consider an additional plan B approach.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.

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About Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Euro-Video and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

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