Your credit card debt hangs around like a bad smell and it seems like nothing will get rid of it. If you would like to start paying back your Credit Card Debt but don’t know where to start, here are 15 ways to pay off your credit card debt.
Whilst paying back your debt isn’t the most exciting thing to do, at least when it is gone you can feel better about yourself.
Even taking control of things can be a big boost and knowing you are starting to tackle the problem can provide some much needed relief.
Here we go!
1. Cut up your Credit Cards.
If you are paying back your Credit Cards but keep spending on them each month, consider cutting up your credit cards so you can’t use them anymore. This could be considered drastic action but could be considered in extreme cases. This is what I should have done but I didn’t!
2. Monitor your spending.
Manually tracking all your monthly expenses will help you build up a picture of where all your money goes. Once you have done this for a month, consider if you really need to spend the money and what you save you can use to pay off your credit card debt. I found I was wasting money buying lunches at work so I switched to making my own. This saved me quite a lot.
3. Make sacrifices.
Cut out the morning coffee, borrow books from your local library (assuming in the wake of all the cuts it is still open). Make your own lunches for work instead of buying them.
4. Move to a cheaper Credit Card Deal.
If you have a good credit rating, see if you can get a 0% balance transfer card. Pay off as much as you can when the transfer is complete. You will save interest and money and you should be able to pay off your credit card debt faster. However be careful that there aren’t any hidden charges as it could end up costing you more.
5. Set up a Monthly Budget and try to stick to it.
Make a list of all your expenses and as each one is paid, mark it off your budget. Sticking to your monthly budget should mean you have money left at the end of the month. More ammunition to start tackling that Credit Card Debt!
6. Make more than the minimum payment.
If you only make the minimum payment towards your credit card debt, you will be in debt for a very long time. Using the above tips you should be able to free up some spare cash to start tackling the problem. If you have multiple credit cards, start with the most expensive card first then work your way through. The most expensive card is usually the credit card that charges you the most interest each month.
7. Talk to your Credit Card Companies.
See if they will reduce the amount of interest you are charged each month. Whilst it might seem unlikely it is possible they may do this. Less interest being charged should result in your payments having a bigger impact on the balance.
8. Start an emergency savings pot.
Credit Cards are typically used to cover emergency expenses. If you can start an emergency reserve fund, you will negate the need to spend on your credit cards.
- See this post on Saving up an Emergency fund.
9. Reclaim mis sold Payment Protection Insurance.
You may be entitled to a refund if you have been mis sold PPI. The extra cash could come in useful to help you with paying off your credit card debt. There are a lot of companies out there who can help with this. Alternatively you can also reclaim PPI back yourself.
- See How to Reclaim your PPI for free for information on reclaiming your PPI.
10. Sell your Old Mobile Phones.
If you have old mobile phones lying around, sell them. Whilst they may not be worth much the extra few pounds can go towards paying off your credit card debt.
Mazuma have always been good with me, you can find out more about them here.
11. Sell unused or unwanted items on eBay.
Again what you have might not be worth much but every little helps so they say. However if what you have is worth next to nothing, it is probably not worth your time.
12. Consolidate your Credit Card Debt.
If you have a good credit rating, you may be able to get a loan to pay off your credit cards. The interest on your loan should be cheaper than your credit cards for this to be effective. Another thing to consider is what you will do when the credit cards are paid off. If you will be tempted to spend again then this might not be a good idea. Alternatively you should close the credit card accounts to remove the temptation. After all you don’t want to end up in an even worse situation than when you started.
13. Make additional small payments each month.
If for example your weekly shop was £5 cheaper, pay that £5 off one of your credit cards. It might not seem like much but each little bit you throw at the problem reduces your balance slightly. I find this helps me but I am strange like that.
14. Avoid missing payments.
Missing payments on your Credit Cards will result in you being given late payment charges and if your card goes over its limit, over limit fees. You will also incur extra interest and that’s not going to be helpful to you.
15. What if your Credit Card Debt is beyond self help?
If your Credit Card debt is so serious and you feel there is no hope then seek help as soon as you can. There are a number of organisations in the UK who can help you without charge.
I hope the above information is useful to you. If you have any suggestions of your own then I would like to hear about them. Please comment in the box below.