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I Made Credit Mistakes When I Was Young. I Want to Start Over. – AR

“Dear Steve,

I’m 25 years old and I’m trying to decide what I should do about the significant credit card debt I’ve accumulated as a teenage. The total debit is roughly $29,000 but has now totaled up to $43,000 because of interested. I was young and naive and received so many cards through our university, I thought nothing of it. I grew up in an abusive household and once in college I saw it as the opportunity to get what I want. Now of course I’m looking to do other things in life which this debt is preventing me from doing so.

I want to know what exactly I should do. I’m currently on the verge of getting a new job, but have been told that debt consolidation would be best. I’ve also been told to file for bankruptcy which is something I’d like to avoid. I printed my credit report yesterday for the first time and didn’t even realize how much debt I was in! The status of these cards says it will expire by next spring. A few have all ready been written off, but I’m not sure exactly where to go from here. I’d like to be able to purchase a car and a home, but that doesn’t even seem like an option for me. I’d like to figure this out now being 25 than wait any longer. Please help!

AR”

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The Answer

Dear AR,

If items are going to start dropping off your credit report this year, that would tell me this debt is from you were 18.

We have a few issues here we need to deal with. The first is how much debt you owe on accounts that are still open?

Second, how much money you can afford to devote towards debt repayment each month?

Third, if you have any accounts that you’ve had for quite a while that you’ve never been late or behind on?

I can give you some general guides on what to look for but the real question here is if the mountain of debt you are dragging along is so big that it is unreasonable to expect you’ll be able to pay your way out of it.

As ironic as it might sound, faced with such large debt and considering your goals of wanting to purchase a house in a few years, then bankruptcy seems like the logical solution. But before you can determine if that’s going to be right for you, you’d either need to click here to find a local bankruptcy attorney or post more information about your situation in the comments below to clarify some of the questions I had.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.

Big Hug!

I Made Credit Mistakes When I Was Young. I Want to Start Over.   AR
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About Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode
Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
  • Ar

    I owe about $31,000 on open accounts. Originally it would’ve been about $19,000 but interested added on over the years. I was looking into contact a debt attorney as well. I don’t want to file for bankruptcy but I was also told that if you pay the collectors that doesn’t mean your FICO score will go up. Also with a debt attorney I’ll have to end up paying them a significant amount as well. I’m all ears for suggestions.

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