Ask The Get Out of Debt Experts Budgeting & Budgets

I Can’t Afford a Speeding Ticket or Medical Expenses. – Jorge

“Dear Steve,

I have credit cards and unsecured loans totaling about $31,000 for which the payments combine to about $1,200/mo. Another $1200/mo goes to other payments such as utilities, car payments, rent, etc. and this does not include my groceries or any social expenses. I make $780/week so this does not leave me much room to breathe and I am constantly juggling payments. Any bumps (like a speeding ticket, medical expense, etc.) usually put me in a hole and i end up late on payments and sometimes put me a month behind. My credit score has dropped drastically so conserving it is no longer any issue. I would love a consolidation loan at a low interestrate to bring my payments down, but my score has dropped so much, no one will approve a loan for me. I am considering going through a credit counseling agency.

Should I sign up with a credit counseling agency to reduce my monthly payments?

Jorge”

Dear Jorge,

Entering a credit counseling program will not lower your monthly payment on your credit cards. It may lower your interest rates but that’s not really the primary help you need, you need breathing room in your budget.

How many speeding tickets do you get?

Do you get a big tax refund at the end of the year?

I’m confused by your math here. You say that you bring home $3,120 a month and your expenses are $2,400 a month but you can’t get by. Have you tracked your expenses to get a good grip on what you really spend? If not follow the spending plan process in my free book you can download, Eliminate Your Debt Like a Pro.

Before I can guide you down the right path, more information is needed.

Please update me on your progress by posting updates here in the comments section of your question. I’m very interested in how this works out for you.

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About the author

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.

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