As soon as you buy a place to live most likely you will be entering into a world of debt. But debt needn’t be a nightmare to get to grips with.
MyFamilyClub’s Gemma Johnson, went to visit Neba and her family to share tips on how we can control debt without letting it control us.
Here are some ways to control your debt:
Keep a log of your payments
The first hurdle to jump is to face up to your debt. Try writing down all your debts including lump sums and monthly payments so you can prioritise and plan a payment schedule.
Look around for cheaper credit
If you’re currently paying interest on credit card debt, there could be ways round this. A short-term solution could be to shift your debt onto a card offering 0% interest on balance transfers for a limited period.
If you manage to reduce your minimum monthly payments, continue to pay at your previous rate to reduce the debt.
Make a budget
By setting a monthly budget, analysing your debts, and bringing down your expenditure you can tackle your debts in the right order. Set realistic goals and ditch any non-essential spending. Start with the debt with the highest interest rate first and make minimum payments on the others.
Negotiate an achievable payment plan
If you think you may not be able to make your next debt repayments, let your creditors know as soon as possible. By talking to them in advance they may be more understanding than you’d imagine.
There are lots of organisations that specialise in giving free help and advice. National Debtline, the Consumer Credit Counselling Service, Christians Against Poverty, or Citizens Advice are all good places to start.