I Can Make My Monthly Payments But Can’t Breathe. – Jas

“Dear Steve,

I have 6 credit cards. One of which I am over the limit by about $500 because I didn’t read the fine print and ended up with a $900 interest fee. Between all six cards I am currently in over $20k in debt.

I make $46k a year and still going to school which I use student loans to pay. I am able to make each payments, but not as much as I would like to really pay down my debt. I feel like my 20k debt is excessive and I work non-stop to pay off my bills. I feel like I’m not living my life. My fixed expenses total to approximately $1250 a month. I bring home approximately $2800 a month.

I’m considering debt consolidation, but I am not sure if that is the right path for me. Is this something I should do to breathe a little easier each month?


Dear Jas,

Thanks for reaching out to me for help.

You have several different approaches.

One is to use the free ReadyForZero.com program to organize your debt repayment into an orderly program and let it glide you out of debt. It’s a good way to put getting out of debt on autopilot without outside intervention.

Another very good way would be to actually get an unsecured debt consolidation loan but I would guess that based on what you shared your credit score is all that great. However, you can check your credit score for free at CreditKarma.com. If it is above 680 then a debt consolidation loan from Lending Club or Propser might be a realistic way to reduce your payment.

If you can make the monthly payment but want to reduce the interest rates, you can look into a credit counseling program. This will lead to your cards being closed which can lower your credit score.

You can also use the free How to Get Out of Debt Calculator to review your options.

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Homework: Take a look at those options and give me your feedback in the comments below.

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


You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.
Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

Steve Rhode

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