Credit, Debt Reduction

What To Do After You Pay Off That Credit Card

You have selected and begun to execute your plan for getting out of debt – and you have just paid off that first credit card debt. You are awesome! Paying off that first account is an important milestone.  There’s a tremendous feeling of satisfaction which accompanies the completion of any worthy goal.  Take a while to enjoy the success – and then get pumped to move on to the next step in your plan. Before you move too fast, however, check one thing – the next monthly statement from your credit card company.  You may be in for a surprise. Even though you paid your balance – in full – you may still owe some residual interest. Most companies charge…

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Credit Cards On Pause

When my wife and I decided to get out of debt, we did three things. First, we created a simple to use zero-based budget. Second, we established an emergency fund. Third, we stopped using our credit cards. Essentially, we put them on pause. We didn’t cancel them and we didn’t cut them up.  Instead, we simply stopped using them. Here are the details: Why did we stop using our credit cards? We were spending more than we made, month after month, and we were using credit cards to finance our bad spending habits. Easy-credit made it easy to overspend – and we did. Getting out of debt became a priority.  Putting away the credit cards – and the ease-of-use that…

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Credit, Debit Cards

Reduce Credit Card Use

According to this recent L.A. Times report – Consumer borrowing increased at an annual rate of 10% in November,the largest jump in a decade…  Outstanding credit card debt increased 8.5% in November… (emphasis, mine) It appears that folks are using credit cards more than ever – and outstanding balances are increasing. For more than seven years, here’s how I have reduced (and almost eliminated) my use of a credit card: I live on a budget. If we eliminate unplanned-for spending, we can eliminate unplanned-for borrowing.  At the beginning of the month, I know how much money I am going to spend and I know where I am going to spend it.  Some portion of credit card use results from poor…

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