October 28th, 2013

6 Tricks for Paying Off Credit Card Debt

 

Tricks for Paying Off Credit Card Debt | Credit Karma Blog

**Today’s guest post is contributed by Lauren.**

 

Paying off credit card debt is one of the best things you can do for your finances and your future. Unfortunately, it is also hard work! Here are 6 tricks to help you tackle your credit card debt and pay it off even faster.

1. Determine Your Personality Type

Debt is a marathon, not a sprint. Paying off debt only works if you are committed to it. With that being said, there are two main approaches to paying off debt: the “Debt Snowball” method and the “Debt Avalanche” method. The Debt Avalanche recommends paying down whichever balances have the highest interest rates first, while the Debt Snowball recommends you pay off accounts with the smaller balances first.

If you’re a penny pincher, paying off the highest interest rate accounts first probably makes the most sense because it will save you more money in the long term, and more money saved means more money for paying down debt. On the other hand, paying off debt can be difficult and motivation is key; for that reason, many like the feeling of having the smallest card or account paid off and use that feeling of accomplishment to push forward.

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October 21st, 2013

Should You Say “I Do” if You Are in Debt?

Should You Say “I Do” if You Are in Debt?

For one out of four Americans, “cash only” is a way of life. 17 million Americans lack access to any type of formal bank account and are classified as “unbanked.” In addition, 51 million Americans do access basic bank services such as a savings account, yet they still rely on alternative financial institutions as well. These individuals might frequent check-cashing joints, fall prey to payday lenders, and often incur exorbitant fees associated with such alternative banking methods.

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October 14th, 2013

Protecting Yourself From Identity Theft Recovery Costs

Protecting Yourself From Identity Theft Recovery Costs

For one out of four Americans, “cash only” is a way of life. 17 million Americans lack access to any type of formal bank account and are classified as “unbanked.” In addition, 51 million Americans do access basic bank services such as a savings account, yet they still rely on alternative financial institutions as well. These individuals might frequent check-cashing joints, fall prey to payday lenders, and often incur exorbitant fees associated with such alternative banking methods.

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October 7th, 2013

Practical Ways to Speed Up Your Debt Payoff

Practical Ways to Speed Up Your Debt Payoff TH

Reducing debt rewards the steady, but there are also things we can do to get to our destinations more quickly. From cutting small expenses to going on a spending diet to forming a support group, here are some tips to help you speed along the way to financial freedom.

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September 30th, 2013

How to Build Credit as a Self-Employed Freelancer

How to Build Credit as a Self-Employed Freelancer th

Being your own boss has some great benefits, with one of the main ones being the freedom and flexibility to do with your time as you please. However, with that freedom comes a big obstacle -- it’s difficult to build credit. This is something I discovered after I quit my job in May 2013 and had to rely on my own income for stability, paying the bills and of course, building credit. Thankfully, you can still build credit as a self-employed freelancer by using these five unconventional strategies.

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September 23rd, 2013

How To Stay On Top Of Your Student Loans

How To Stay On Top Of Your Student Loans th

For most people, student loans represent their first encounter with the world of credit and finance. They can open a world of opportunity to young people who might otherwise not be able to pay to continue their education. More than 60% of American students (that’s almost 12 million in total) will borrow money annually to help pay for college. It’s likely that this is where you’ll begin to build your credit score: a little number with huge consequences. It can be intimidating, but there’s really no reason to stress out. Staying in control of your student debt is easier than it sounds. When dealing with loans, you should:

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September 16th, 2013

3 Financial Practices of Money Savvy People

financial practices of money savvy people th

“If only I made more money” is usually how a sentence starts when someone is trying to figure out how others have mastered their finances. But if you asked money-savvy people what their secret to financial bliss is, they’ll have a simple answer. The answer is that financial independence is based on three simple practices. Without these sound financial practices in place, reaching financial bliss is a difficult and seemingly unattainable goal.

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September 9th, 2013

The Alternative Credit Spectrum

alternative credit spectrum th

Having a poor credit score can sometimes feel like being trapped in quicksand-- the harder you try to escape, the further high interest rates and punitive charges pull you back down. But everyone needs access to credit and if you do need funding, there are always alternatives. The terms may not be pretty or available to everyone, but below are some options that may improve your credit health, or help fund you until you can.

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September 2nd, 2013

How Much Should You Really Save in Your Emergency Fund?

how much should you really save in your emergency fund th

You’ve probably heard that your emergency fund should contain about three to six months’ worth of expenses. At least, that’s what most of the financial gurus say. But there’s a big difference between three months’ worth of expenses and six months’ worth of expenses. So which end of the spectrum do you fall on? Or should you actually save more or less?

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August 26th, 2013

Back to School On a Budget

back to school on a budget th

Everyone always talks about Christmas being the biggest budget-busting time of year. And I agree, because we buy more presents during that six week period than we do all year long. However, the back-to-school season can be just as much of a financial war zone when you think about it: between the endless amount of school supplies, new clothing, and equipment for activities - not to mention the fact that everyone seems to have one last vacation or party before the summer ends - your wallet can get exhausted. Whether you are working to pay off debt, save for a mortgage, or build your retirement fund, you need that extra cash. So to keep you from feeling the pinch, here are a few ways to get back to school while staying on budget.

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