The first step in debt management is to assess your debt and income. List everything you owe and how much cash you have to pay on those debts. Unless you know this, you will be unable to manage your debt effectively and reduce it.
You also need to remove unnecessary expenses to free up more cash to pay on the debt. This may include getting rid of services such as cable television or internet service or not stopping at the local coffee shop every morning. You may have to stop eating out or going to movies for awhile. Every dollar you can put towards your debt will help you get rid of it that much faster.
If you do not have enough money to make the minimum payments on your debt, you need to contact the creditors to try to make arrangements. This is where a debt management company can be of service. They will deal with the creditors and negotiate lower rates and flexible repayment schedules.
What About A Debt Management Plan?
Working with a debt management company will also allow you to make a single payment to them and they disburse the money between your creditors. Once a creditor is paid in full, they will take that amount and add it to one of the others until you are debt free. The downside of using a debt management company is that they may take a portion of your payment as a fee for this service. So instead of putting all of the money towards your debt, you are now paying an additional bill.
The initial counseling session with a debt management company or credit counseling agency is usually free. This gives you a chance to talk to them and get answers to your questions without being obligated. If you do talk to a company, find one that has a strong reputation that you can trust.
Another way to manage your debt and reduce it quickly is to sell any assets that you can and use the extra cash to pay off some of your debts. You can also find a part-time job to get extra cash. Use coupons and buy on sale to save money on groceries. Look for little ways that can add cash and they will add up. The key to this is to find ways to get extra money to reduce your debts as quickly as possible.
Self-discipline is the way out of debt. You have to make paying your bills a top priority and make sacrifices to achieve your goal. You must change your way of thinking about credit. That is the start of a debt management plan.
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