- Pay in full. Pay balance in full each month to avoid paying finance charges.
- Pay bi-monthly. Pay half of the balance with 1st paycheck of the month then pay the remaining balance with 2nd paycheck of the month.
- Pay weekly. Pay the minimum monthly payment the 1st week after you get the bill, and then each week pay as much as you can toward the monthly balance. Repeat this every month.
- Pay extra. Pay as much as you can when you get the bill, and then pay more towards the bill when you get extra money.
- Automate. Set up automatic payments from your checking account the day you receive your paycheck or the day after you receive your paycheck to pay down debt.
- Use unexpected income. Use your income tax refund, economic stimulus check, bonus check or sell new or used items on eBay.
- Negotiate. Negotiate for a lower interest rate, get fees waived or request a settlement to help reduce the balance owed to make it easier to pay down debt.
- Create a budget. Balance your checkbook and create a budget to identify what you owe, what you earn and what you spend to find areas where you can reduce spending. Pay no more than 35% of your total monthly income towards housing, pay no more than 15% towards transportation, pay no more than 10% towards debt excluding mortgage, pay 10% towards savings and pay no more than 25% towards remaining expenses to create a balanced budget.
- Live Below Your Means. Buy needs vs. wants; buy only the things you need, delay the things you want until you have the money to purchase the item.
- Pay with cash. Use credit cards for emergencies only and purchase items with cash.
- Purchases. Avoid making bad decisions such as buying rent-to-own furniture or buying a big screen television and other items that have no value.
- Pay on time. Avoid paying late fees whenever possible. If you know you will pay a bill late contact the company to setup payment arrangements.
- Keep balances low. Keep credit card balances at 20% or less of the credit limit.
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