How to Consolidate Your Credit Card Debt

By Leni Parrish on September 24, 2012

Credit Card Debt ConsolidationEvery year, millions of people consolidate their credit cards into one payment. The result is usually a combination of excellent outcomes including lower payments, lower interest rates, and a faster payoff date.

Here are a few ways that you can consolidate your credit card debt:

1. Balance transfers – Balance transfers let you move debt from one credit card to another, usually at a much lower interest rate. Using a balance transfer offer to consolidate credit card debt can save you a significant amount of interest, especially if you move your balances to a credit card with zero percent interest rates.

2. Personal loans – Banks issue unsecured personal loans to individuals all the time. Usually issued in amounts of less than $20,000, a personal loan is a loan that you can use for any purpose. In general, expect interest rates of 7% or more. Typically, personal loans are more expensive than mortgages but less expensive than credit cards.

3. Credit counseling – A final option, many enter into credit counseling only for very serious credit card debts that might otherwise lead to bankruptcy. Try this solution only if you are not able to obtain a workable payment system from a balance transfer or personal loan.

If you do work to consolidate and pay off your credit card debt, always remember to keep your accounts open to ensure that you do not negatively affect your credit score. If you’d like to rebuild your credit, and get back to responsible credit card use, consider opening a credit card with a small credit line. This will reinforce reasonable spending habits and set limits on spending – you can find many of these on our site.

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