Credit card debt is a common problem for many Americans. Some individuals and households can struggle to make ends meet each month, with limited options for increasing household income and limited access to alternative forms of credit.
Debt consolidation can be a strong approach in such circumstances. Ultimately, the goal of all debt consolidation methods is to achieve lower monthly payments and hopefully improved credit score through effective bill reduction.
Which method is the best for bill consolidation?
ONE: Transfer balances.
Banks may allow you to transfer credit card debt to another account, typically with a 0% interest for a set number of months. After the introductory period ends, your APR may vary depending on your creditworthiness and prevailing interest rates. This method can be beneficial if you have an existing balance at a high rate or are not approved for lower rates after applying for debt consolidation.
TWO: Balance transfers with zero interest
Some cards may offer special promotions like 0% APR on balance transfers, but typically these offers are for six or 12 months only. If you don’t make timely payments during the promotional period, your rate could jump significantly.
THREE: Personal loans via financial institutions or peer-to-peer lending sites.
Personal loans made by banks and other lenders can be used for bill consolidation while offering favorable rates if your credit score is high enough to secure approval. Peer-to-peer lending websites act as middlemen, allowing individuals to obtain personal loans at better interest rates than they would typically get from a bank since there is no “middleman” to take a cut of the interest.
FOUR: Home equity loans or lines of credit.
Homeowners may be able to obtain personal loans using their homes as collateral. This is typically an option only if you own your house outright or have significant equity in it (at least 20%). Generally, applying for this type of loan will require you to apply via a bank rather than another lender; however, each case differs depending on the lender, and rates are usually better than those offered by credit cards or payday lenders.
FIVE: Bad credit personal loans.
Some banks and other lending institutions offer bad credit personal loans at high APRs. Still, these should be avoided if possible since they can cost more over time than any other method mentioned above. This is because other options can help improve your credit score while getting a bad credit personal loan will leave you deeper in debt after the introductory period has ended.
Additionally, you may have to pay higher fees and interest rates with a bad credit personal loan than other options. You learn more about how this works at https://www.bills.com/.
There are also benefits of consolidating bills into one account that can provide better financial stability. For example, it is easier to track your payment history when you have just one account to worry about instead of several. The goal of debt consolidation should be to make it easier for you to make timely payments on your debt, improve your ability to control spending habits, and ultimately reduce the total amount of money owed overall by paying off high-interest debts faster.
Based on these factors, an individual may choose any number of methods above based on their situation; however, long-term goals must always be considered to develop a plan that will result in the most advantageous and sustainable outcome.
Consolidating bills into one account can be a worthwhile endeavor if appropriately done. Still, individuals should never forget to weigh their short-term and long-term needs before signing on the dotted line for any loan.