Post # 1
I want to say thanks in advance. I owe several credit cards and things totaling about 3,500. I am only ably to pay about 30-50 a month on each bill at the moment, with some of the cards having a 29.99 apr.
Im sick of it and want to get rid of it all. I stopped using my cards awhile back and have no intention of going back!! Cut them up. Anyway I did the math and realized it will take me a couple to a few years to pay this all off.
Anyway, I was told by a friend who works at a bank that they are offering 1.99 APR for a loan. I was thinking of getting a loan for 3,400, paying off all the high interest credit cards and then I would only have one bill left to pay which would be the low interest loan.
It sounds like a good financial idea, and I know there is no guarantee that I would get approved for it, but does this sound right?? One bill with low interest compared to several bills with high interest??
Thanks for any help. 🙂
Post # 3
Do you qualify for the loan with that low of an APR? If your credit card interest rates are that high, I’d wonder if you could get the 1.99 APR, of if they’d use that to get people in the door, and then tell them they have a higher interest rate.
Post # 4
@abbie017: Very good question.
Another idea would be to open a new card with 0% interest for one year (if you qualifiy) and to transfer the balances over (be sure balance transfers are 0% or a very low interest rate)
Pay your $150 to that one card that now has all your debt. Youll be able to pay $1,800 on the principal before the interest kicks in again.
Post # 5
When I was in a bit of cc debt a few years ago, I was always frustrated that those 0% offers never applied to me because I had debt. It always felt like a vicious cycle. THe only way I know how to pay off cc debt is to free up as much extra $$ as you can and pick the cc with either the lowest balance or the lowest APR and throw all your extra at it. I think Dave Ramsey calls it the “Snowball effect”. I had to cut some things out for awhile, downgraded my cable and cell, packed my lunch, etc. It sucks! But as soon as you start seeing the balances go down, you’ll get excited.
I picked my smallest balance, and slowly made it go away. Then I took that money I was paying and started on the bigger one.
The loan might be a good thing if you can actually get 1.99 APR.
Post # 6
Before you go about applying for a loan (which it sounds like you might not be able to get) check with each of your cards to see if any are offering a zero percent rate on a balance transfer. Usually you will pay 2-4% of your total balance to transfer and then have 18 months (or sometimes 12) to pay it off.
If your existing cards don’t offer it, you will probably be able to open another card w/a 0% initial interest rate more easily than a loan.
Also when you finish paying them off DO NOT close them! That will hurt your credit big time. You should still use them a couple of times a month and then pay them off monthly.
Post # 7
@Earlybride: It would be a good option if you can qualify for that rate. If you can’t, I wonder if you could call all your credit card companies and trying to see if you can negotiate a lower rate.
http://www.getrichslowly.org is a good site – he successfully paid down all his debt and has some good advice. It helped me back when I was in debt.
Can you get a second job? I took on some work on the side and it helped me make a big dent in my debt (I had way more than you). If you know it’s for a specific purpose, you will be more motivated.
ETA: It’s ok to close credit cards – I did. Just leave your longest open account open forever. I had a few stores cards, a Mastercard, etc., and now I am down to 2 cards. It only temporarily hits your credit rating.
Post # 8
I’d probbaly apply for the loan and see how that goes.
Can you sell clothes in your closet?
Downgrade your iPhone if you have it to a prepaid phone?
Get rid of cable and internet?
Increase the deductible on your car to lower your insurance premiums $500 to $1000 saves a few dollars).
Take on a second job?
Paying that little per month is going to be awful!
Post # 9
i would definitely go the route of opening a new credit card that has a promotional balance transfer rate of 0% (or a very low APR like 1.99%). it’s easier to get than a loan. discover card and citibank have offers like that all the time. i have a balance transfer on my discover card for 0% for 18 months. also like a PP said, don’t close your cards. it will hurt your credit score. you don’t have to use them, just don’t close them.
Post # 10
Do you live in an area where people could use housing – would you be able to rent out a couch? a room? List your home on Airbnb or sublet to get some extra cash – housing cash goes a long way.
I am also a fanatic reader of http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/ – they have tons of stories on how to better manage your money and get rid of debt. There are so many good stories, here’s one example
Post # 11
I second the AirBnB idea, I use it both ways and it’s great. Another popular one is BedyCasa.
I hope you are already on a tight budget, and if not, maybe you can trim a few more places and throw more at the debt…
Post # 12
There are credit cards offer 0% APR for balance transfer. You have to pay a fee though. Have you looked into it?