Get Out of Debt Guy - Steve Rhode

How Should I Really Try to Get Out of Debt? – Anne

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Question:

Dear Steve,

I am divorced, helping older kids through college and still have young kids at home. The father pays child support but is not involved with the kids. They live with me 24-7 and have never even spent the night with him.

I work 2 part time jobs, also cleaning condos on the side, trying to make sure the kids are not at home alone too much. I started using credit cards in the last couple of years to make ends meet, for birthdays, christmas but my interest rates are starting to get the best of me.

I am not behind on anything but need to find out genuine debt reduction help. I went through real estate school and will take my state exam very soon. I am believing that this will provide more income.

Is there such thing as a genuine debt reduction help or are they all scams. Is there a debt loan with lower interest rates than my credit cards so I will simply have one payment a month instead of the credit card payments? Thanks for taking my question.

Anne

Answer:

Dear Anne,

First off, bless you for working so hard. It sounds like you are a good mom and trying to do the best you can.

While your question seems so simple, it is not. You have actually struck at the heart of the problem when dealing with approaching a journey to get out of debt.

To begin with, here are a few past articles that are really on point for you right now.

How Do I Get Out of Debt Quickly? Change Your Mindset.

How to Get Out of Debt. The Honest and Unvarnished Truth.

The Truth About The Success Rates, Failure Rates and Completion Rates of Credit Counseling, Debt Settlement, and Bankruptcy.

As you wrote your question to me you were really faced with a couple of questions you didn’t know were important.

For example, do you honestly see yourself being able to complete a multiyear repayment strategy if you are already needing to use credit to make ends meet? The vast majority of people can’t accomplish that goal.

And those that can, make a huge sacrifice that will potentially cost them large sums in lost retirement funds. See What Repaying Your Debt Will Cost You in Retirement – Calculator.

And then there is the question if you are able to cut back on your current expenses to make room to reduce your debt? I would imagine you’ve already trimmed things pretty tight already.

Is it possible to get a debt consolidation loan? Companies like LendingClub.com and Prosper.com both offer unsecured debt consolidation loans. But will you just be trading one loan for another and still not able to build an emergency fund or save for retirement? That’s an important question to ask.

So that brings us around to evaluating if maybe bankruptcy is right for you. But there are a couple of important articles you should read before you decide for or against bankruptcy.

Those That File Bankruptcy Do Better Than Those That Don’t.

So You Are Going to File Bankruptcy. That’s Great News. Congratulations.

My personal opinion is the one asset you have that is the most precious, is time. If you waste years trying to dig yourself out of a deep hole you can be losing so much in retirement.

If you are fully aware of that fact but want to pursue a single payment then you should consider a credit counseling approach. Here is one company you could contact but there are many credit counseling groups out there.

But before you leap to have just any debt relief company assist you, the following guides may be helpful.

  1. The Ultimate Consumer Guide to Checking Out a Debt Relief Company Before You Sign On the Line
  2. 10 Must Do Steps to Find the Best Credit Counseling or Debt Settlement Company for You
  3. How to Check Out a Business or Company to Avoid Getting Scammed or Ripped Off


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