How To Reduce Post Holiday Debt

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Many people find themselves in debt after the holiday season. Often, it was unintentional, or for many in tough economic times, it is the only way they can get through the season. In any event, it is done and over worth, and now it must be dealt with. Debt can spiral out of control the longer one avoids it. These steps will help you deal with your holiday debt, and help you become debt-free.

STEP ONE: Gather all your bills and cards.

If you don’t have your more recent statements yet, get online and retrieve one. Take all your cards and store them in a safe place. You must commit to not incur any more debt while you are paying off your holiday debt.

STEP TWO: Make a list of your debts.

List all your cards, their balances, interest rates, minimum payments and payment due dates. This will give you a clear picture of your debts. Add up your total debt and you total minimum payments due each month.

STEP THREE: Go over your budget.

Go over your entire budget and see how much you can allocate to credit cards. Can you cut out some extra’s while you are paying off your holiday debt? Perhaps you may want to consider picking up some extra hours at work or even taking on a second job. Selling unwanted items on craigslist or ebay can also bring in some extra cash. Use this extra money to pay off your holiday debt.

STEP FOUR: Pay off your smallest balance credit card first.

Order your credit cards from lowest balance to highest balance. Take that minimum payment and double it if you can, or pay as much on this card as possible. Any extra money should go to this card until it is paid off. Once this debt is paid off, move on to the next card with the lowest balance.

STEP FIVE: Pay the minimum on the rest of the cards.

Pay only the minimum on your other cards as all your extra cash should go toward your smallest balance.

STEP SIX: Start a Holiday Savings Account.

Calculate what you need or want to spend for the next holiday season and start saving. This will help you avoid falling into debt again as the next holiday season approaches. Find a high interest savings account, or open a CD (Certificate of Deposit) if you are able.

STEP SEVEN: Realize that holidays are not about spending money, but being with family and friends.

Many people get swept up in the holiday shopping season, but it is important to remember that the holidays are not about material items, but being with family and friends.

Congratulations on taking the first step to paying off your holiday debt! You can do it if you put your mind to it and work at it.