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Credit cardsYou’ve opened all your gifts, and now it’s time to open those post-holiday credit card statements. If you were a little too jolly with your holiday spending, here are some tips to help you pay down your credit card debt.

Start small, then add on. When you use your credit card to buy something, you have borrowed money. If you can pay it all off, that’s great. If not, try to pay at least a little more than the minimum payment. You also can make more than one payment a month. If you can swing it, that extra payment can help you with the goal of paying off the total balance sooner.

Take an ‘interest’ in your payments. If you only pay the minimum each month, you could end up paying much more in interest. Understand your credit card’s interest rate. The more you pay off each month, the less you’ll pay in interest over time.

Know when to pay. You were on time with your gifts, so don’t be late with your payment. Make a note of your credit card’s due date so you pay your bill on time. If you don’t pay on time, you could add extra fees to your final costs.

Take stock. If you’re having trouble making the minimum payment, it’s time to take a hard look at your budget. Can you reduce any spending to free up some funds?

Make a plan if you can’t pay. Owing more than you can afford to repay can damage your credit rating. If you cannot pay the minimum amount due, call your creditors ASAP. They may be able to place you on a payment plan, making your debt easier to manage.

For more help, read using a credit card and paying down credit card debt.

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3 Comments


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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

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sammi
January 29, 2018
The scams are many and varied in context. It is not always easy to pick out the scammers before it is after the fact. Some advice concerning a standardized reporting/sharing system, would be of use.
Arky
January 30, 2018
If people would take the time to learn the basics about how the IRS or SS, etc, or any government agency operates that could go a long way to recognizing those type scams. Otherwise it makes common sense to not give out personal information, account #'s, pass codes, etc. to someone who called or e-mailed you regardless of how legitimate they may sound or appear. Always say you will get back to them, then call the company or government agency they said they were from and make an inquiry. If everyone did that, they'd be out of business.