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Debt Consolidation Evaluation and Strategy

Aug 23, 2008
if you're reading this, you're probably in one of two situations right now. You're either looking at your mounting pile of past due bills and wondering if a debit consolidation loan will help you out, or you've already gotten one, didn't do your homework, and are in more trouble than before. I sincerely hope that you fall in a third category, that being someone with a few credit cards with some small balances who wants to consolidate their loans into one payment and possibly save some money on interest. The reality is, though, that you're probably in one of the first two groups, and if so you're in need of some quick advice before you start digging a hole that you can't get out of. So read on, and we'll lay a few things out.

First, your problems won't be solved by debit a consolidation loan. It is simply a tool to help you get out of the mess that you've already created. The real problem is that you're bad with money, and that can be a terrible problem if not addressed. So, assuming that's the case, the first thing you should do is cut up all your credit cards and figure out how you're going to live within your means. You should probably enlist a responsible friend or family member with this task, or if possible, seek the help of a professional. Your problems will continue to compound until you learn to stop borrowing money.

Once you have a plan on how to get your expenditures less than your income, you can start to look at your debits and how to best consolidate them. So make a list of all your balances, you minimum monthly payments, and the interest rate that the debit is at. Run the numbers and find out how quickly you could pay off your smallest balance if you combined all your minimum payments and concentrated on that one debit. Don't worry about running interest calculations if the debit is sufficiently small, it won't make much of a difference and you're not looking to figure out the second in time that you have it payed off, just a close idea.

Now take those payments that you no longer have to apply to your smallest debit and pay down your next smallest debit. Approximate how long it will take to do this, and move to the next one. Continue to do so until you have paid off all your debits on paper.
About the Author
Allen Wright is a freelance writer who covers whatever financial topics hold his interest. Find out the next steps to take for debit consolidation and other debit consolidation loans here.
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