New Year’s Resolutions: The How Did I Get In Debt Edition?

A lot of us make resolutions – 62 percent versus the 38 percent who don’t bother – but only eight percent say that they are successful in keeping them. That’s a pretty small number. Maybe it’s the resolutions we make and the way we approach them that makes for the stumbling blocks. After all, problems that need a resolution didn’t form overnight, and they can take a long time to resolve.

Righting the Ship

Are you asking yourself, how did I get in debt? Maybe you’re not in so much debt that you need to seek the advice of an attorney, and we’d like to help you keep it that way. Shedding debt is like losing weight, it took a while to pack on the pounds, and it can take some time to reduce your debt. Don’t go into this thinking that you’re going to have it nailed by Valentine’s Day!

  1. Assess the situation. Sit down and write out your debts – who you owe, how much, what the minimum payment is, and the interest. Next figure out your monthly expenses for food, shelter, transportation, and utilities. Now stack that up against your income.
  2. Sometimes you can DIY your debt in different ways, but it can help to get advice from a credit counseling service. They can help you develop better spending habits, teach you to be financially literate, and even develop a debt management plan.
  3. If you are going to DIY, you might want to consider a debt consolidation loan. It simplifies things by taking a bunch of different payments, due dates, and interest rates and smashes them into just one. It’s easier to keep track of, and can save you serious money in interest charges over paying a bunch of different minimum payments.
  4. Do not open new lines of credit. This can actually hurt your credit rating when companies see all those open lines of credit, some maxed out, and deny you credit.
  5. If you are in over your head, if you are desperate, and you see advertisements with lines like “Get a new credit identity!” or “Get rid of bad credit on your report!” These are signs of a credit repair scam. These jerks are doing nothing but reselling stolen Social Security numbers, often from children who will have no idea what happened until they grow up and need credit.
  6. If you are in over your head, if you are desperate, come see us. We can’t wave a magic wand, we can’t make it go away, but we can present you with realistic strategies for handling your debt legally.

Van Horn Law group specializes in personal and corporate bankruptcystudent loan consolidation and litigationforeclosure defense, and debt relief, among other specialties. We think that everyone deserves fair and affordable representation, and we are committed to getting you the best results possible. If you have a question, give us a call or contact us through our “Ask a Lawyer” feature.

Published by
Chad Van Horn

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