If you’re feeling anxious about your financial health during these uncertain times, you’re not alone. That’s why the three national credit reporting agencies are giving people weekly access to monitor their credit report — for free.
Out-of-control debt has a way of taking over your life. High interest rates can cause your balances to climb higher each month, and the higher balances hurt your credit score, making it more difficult to obtain financing for important household expenses or personal needs. As the debt grows, so does your stress.
You’ve probably dreamed of the day when you finally send in your last mortgage check and own your home free and clear.
Paying a little extra every month on your home loan is a way to make that dream a reality faster than you thought, and with today’s historically low savings rates, it could make more sense than ever.
The past year has been a very difficult one, trying to stay safe and healthy, dealing with income reductions and wondering when we can get back to a normal lifestyle. Maybe you are one of the unfortunate consumers to experience some reduction in income and within the past few months have found a new job or been rehired at your last employer. Maybe your spouse has lost their income and you are both struggling to maintain your home and obligations on one income. You now realize how much debt you may have accumulated? How do you handle this going forward?
Time to create a new budget and plan to move forward. Look at your take home income and make a list of the fixed monthly expenses, mortgage, rent, car payment, utility payments as these would take precedent over any other expenses. Make a list of any other new expenses and make sure you write them down to keep track of them.
Review any automatic payment plans you have setup. Review these payment plans and examine the benefits they provide. Although they may be small, they can add up and you may find you have the same benefits elsewhere, which is duplicative and costly.
It is imperative you pay yourself first, meaning you must put away some income into a savings account after each paycheck and before you start paying your bills. Consequently, you will want to have 3-5 months of living expenses put away in case you lose your job or have a loss of income.
Start making your fixed payments first as you would always want to have your food/shelter protected so you may move forward. Extra monies would then be applied to the remaining debt. Slowly start to pay down the debt, this may take months or even a few years. Pay attention to your current spending as well and stay focused on making your new budget work. It will not be easy, but you can make the effort and get the debt under control.
Consider talking to your creditors and explain your situation or contact a Certified Credit Counselor at Debt Management Credit Counseling Corp. www.dmcconline.org, or 866-724-3328, and ask for a free budgeting session and ask how they may be able to help you with your debt issues.
Debt consolidation is a way to collect all your individual debts and lump them into a single loan. It works well to combine overdraft, credit card, and automobile loans. By consolidating your debt you only make one payment to one creditor.Usually, you can negotiate better terms, a lower interest rate, and quicker payoff times. But is debt consolidation always the best idea for you?
DO-IT-YOURSELF PROJECTS are a popular way to save money, which is one reason why there are several TV shows and loads of magazines celebrating the joys of hands-on home improvement.
There is another DIY opportunity that gets much less fanfare and can take about as much time as fixing a leaky kitchen faucet – negotiating with your credit card company.
Using a settlement company to help you dig out from underneath burdensome debt may sound appealing, but it may leave you worse off than when you started, according to new research.
HOUSING, MORTGAGES & EVICTIONS
The two Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced unprecedented steps to help borrowers impacted by COVID-19 remain in their homes.
Pension advances are typically marketed through online ads that most frequently target military and government retirees, and, to a lesser degree, retirees from private-sector companies. Pension advances are also marketed to consumers with low credit scores who may otherwise encounter difficulty obtaining a loan.
One of the most precious assets that you are likely to possess as you progress through life is your home. Owning their own homes is something that most Americans strive for.