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Strategies For Tackling Debt – Which Is Best?

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As any financial expert or debt advisor will tell you, the way to approach tackling your financial woes is to take a systematic approach. However, there are a few different strategies you can employ on your quest to become debt free. Some will work well for you; others may not. But how can you tell which is best for you and your finances?

Today, we’re going to go through a broad range of debt-tackling strategies and explain everything you need to know. Let’s take a closer look at some of your options, and – we hope – point you in the right direction for the strategy best for your situation.

Debt Consolidation

Most debt experts will advise you that you should never consolidate your debts – or, at the very least, be incredibly careful about doing so. However, there are some benefits in going down this route as long as you do your research and choose the right path. For example, interest-free balance transfers can switch your debts so that you don’t pay any interest at all for a set period, meaning all the repayments go towards paying the debt off. However, given that you need a good credit score to enjoy interest-free balance transfers, it’s not always an option. In this case, you might try to look for bad credit loans and consolidate that way. Bear in mind that these can be expensive, so it’s important to work out whether consolidation is worth your while. It might be the case that tackling your debts individually is a more cost-efficient tactic. If you decide that this route is better, the following strategies might help.

The Avalanche

The avalanche method is where you pay off your debts one at a time, focusing on the debt with the highest interest – or highest balance – first. Once you have paid off your highest interest debt, you move onto the next highest, and so on. Using this method is thought to be useful as your higher interest debts will, ultimately, cost you more. However, if the debt is large, it can take a significant amount of time to pay it off, and it requires you to put a lot of money towards it if you want to see quick results.

The Snowball

The debt snowball method focuses on your smallest debts first. The idea here is to get rid of your debts in a systematic way, eliminating them one by one and feeling like you are making progress. Now, let’s take a look at some of the snowball and avalanche methods in more detail.

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APR Method

This method involves working out which creditor is charging you the highest annual percentage rate. You continue paying your minimum repayment to all other creditors, and put any spare money into the highest interest charger. Once you have cleared the first debt, you move onto the next – not forgetting to include your minimum repayment. As you pay off each debt, you can take the minimum payments from your old debts and add them to the next biggest debts, ‘snowballing’ your repayment amounts as you go along. By the time you start paying off your largest debts, you should have a significant sum of money set aside, and it should – in theory – take less time to clear.

Highest Balance Method

You can also consider the highest balance method to repay your debts. This strategy can work if you have a couple of big debts that seem impossible to erase. However, if you put every spare cent you have into tackling your most significant debt, it won’t take long to start seeing your results. Let’s say you have $5,000 on a credit card. If you could, for example, pay $200 a month, in a year’s time you will have whittled this down to $2,800, assuming you have managed to freeze all other interest charges. It’s a dramatic impact that has reduced your debt with that creditor by almost half.

Quick Win

When you keep getting bill after bill in the mail, debts can actually start impacting your life and wellbeing. And it’s always difficult to know where to start. There is a solution, however – go down the quick win route. Using this strategy puts your focus on eliminating your easiest debts first – the ones with the lowest number of repayments left. If there are two debts with similar end dates, tackle the one with the higher monthly payment. While this strategy might cost you more in the long-term than, say, the APR method, it will still give you a sense of momentum. And, most importantly, reduce the number of debts you have far quicker than the other strategies.

Low Balance

Similar to the quick win strategy, the small balance method involves tackling easy debts first – the ones with the least amount of money outstanding. Removing these irritating small debts gives you a sense of momentum, and you can then collate all the minimum repayment monies and use them to tackle the bigger problem areas. If you are struggling to pay off your debts, it’s a strategy worth considering as research shows it is often the most successful.

The family loan

Finally, consider borrowing money from a family member or trusted friend. There are a few reasons why this can work for both parties. First of all, let’s take a look at this strategy from your family member’s point of view. If your mom or dad has, say, money in a standard savings account, the chances are that they aren’t earning lots of interest on it. So, you could offer them a better deal over a set period of time, while still enjoying a lower interest rate than you are currently paying your creditors. This strategy is like a super-charged consolidation plan, as everyone on your side of the fence wins – and you get to pay off your creditors in one hit. It’s always worth doing this as the sooner you can repay your problem debts, the sooner you can start rebuilding your credit score and reducing the impact on your lifestyle and borrowing power.

What Are Really The Best Sources Of Financial Help?

No matter what your situation in life, there are always going to be times when money is a bit tight. The majority of people worry about money from time to time, and the truth is that plenty of people need help occasionally. Why such a situation might come around is another matter altogether. It can be the result of ongoing debt, or it could be a case of just not earning enough. And then there are unforeseen incidents, such as falling ill and not being able to work as a result. All of these circumstances are unfortunate enough in themselves, but not feeling as though there is a decent solution is even worse. However, it’s not true – there is always help to be had, even if it is not all made equal. In this post, we are going to take a look at a few of the main sources of financial help. How do they compare with one another? And which is the best of all for most people? Let’s take a look and try to answer these questions.

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Benefits

You might be surprised at how many people can get some kind of benefits. There are all sorts of situations which warrant benefit being given, and you never know – you might be eligible. However, it can be tricky knowing whether or not you are, and there are so many out there that it’s hard to know where to begin. A good idea is to take a look at your local government’s website – chances are, they will have plenty of information on what benefits are available and whether or not you can apply for them. Although many people don’t like the idea of using benefits, the fact is that they are there for a reason. If you feel that you need them, and that you are eligible, then you might as well claim them.

Loans

Borrowing is often a good option when you are in financial trouble, as it gives you a way out and offers some time to repay. There are a huge number of different kinds of loans out there, and one of your main concerns will be with choosing one that is right for you and your situation. To that end, always make sure that you are checking loans carefully before taking them out. You want to check how much you are likely to repay, as well as what the time period is for repayment and for payment to you. Fortunately, finding a loan fast is now easier than ever. If you are stuck, this just might be your best option until payday.

Grants

Similarly to benefits, there are a huge number of grants out there – and many of them are non-repayable options, meaning that you don’t have to worry about repayment. Again, as with benefits, there are many situations which warrant grants, and it is worth looking into what those situations are to see if you are eligible for one. If you do turn out to be eligible, this could really make a world of difference.

Having A Bad Credit Score Can Negatively Affect You – Here’s Why

Living the life of luxury and buying what you want, when you want is all well and good until it all finally catches up with you of course. Suddenly, the unnecessary spending seems like the worst thing you could have done and you’ll be tasked with having to explain to your kids why you can’t get them a new school uniform this year.

(Side note: teaching your kids about being responsible with money is hugely important and if you start now, you might be helping them to avoid the very same mistakes you’ve made that have led you here.)

You’ll struggle to get loans with a bad credit rating but don’t worry, it’s not the end of the world. If you’re really desperate and you are looking for some temporary relief from your financial struggle, www.cashfloat.co.uk are usually great at offering short term loans to those who need it.

Once you’ve sorted out a way to get food on the table this month, you must, must, MUST continue reading so that you can identify why having a low credit rating is so bad so that you’re determined to fix it.

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  1. Getting loans is going to be an uphill battle

When you have a bad credit score, obtaining a loan seems like an impossible task, and that’s because it usually is. The lower the score, the more you’re going to struggle to find a lender who will offer you a loan.

  1. You’ll be paying higher amounts of interest

If you’ve been applying desperately for loans and being faced with rejection time and time again, to then find that you’ve been accepted, you’re likely to take whatever you can and run with it. The problem with having a bad credit score is that you’ll encounter the really bad deals that come hand in hand with extortionately high interest rates. It’s well known that mortgage providers save their best loans (the ones with the lowest amount of interest) for buyers who have both a good credit score and a hefty deposit.

  1. Getting a roof over your head will be rather difficult

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Most landlords will want to run a credit check on you before you both sign above the dotted line and nothing will put a potential landlord off more than a wannabe tenant who has an awful credit score. Think about it – why would they want you living under their roof when you’ve proven in the past that you aren’t great with keeping up with payments or that you require the use of credit cards to help you get by from week to week?

If you do manage to find a landlord who’s happy to let you rent a place, you’ll probably find that you have a much smaller choice as landlords have previously admitted that they save their best properties for those with higher credit scores.

  1. The pre employment credit check isn’t going to be successful

So you’ve wowed your potential new employers during the interview process and they are all set and ready to offer you the job. A pre employment credit check is all part of the usual screening process during the hiring process as your employer will want to ensure that you don’t pose a risk to the business. They’ll be looking to see whether there’s any history of financial mismanagement and if it shows that you have a super low credit score, you might find that you never get that call with the job offer after all, even though you were certain you had it in the bag.

A study found that one in seven people have been told that they were denied a job due to a poor credit rating and if you’re applying for a job that involves dealing with money, government agencies or security clearance, you will definitely struggle to come out on top if your credit rating isn’t looking great to potential employers.

  1. Many a missed call

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You might also struggle to get a mobile phone contract. Whilst there are bigger and more important things to worry about (like finding a paying job and a place to live), not being able to have a phone is also a huge problem.Practically everyone these days has a phone and those who don’t are always met with suspicion. Mobile phone and network providers pay close attention when it comes to credit scores and if yours is bad, you’re far less likely to get yourself a month-to-month longer term (usually the cheaper ones in the long run) mobile phone plan.