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Debt Management

#AskanExpert: What’s the Best Way to Help a Family Member Struggling Financially?

Q. Our daughter and son-in-law are struggling to pay their mortgage and other bills each month. She was laid off from her job and has been caring for our son-in-law at home. He has multiple health issues. Our son-in-law may be influenced by addictive behavior such as gambling or using drugs. He is very depressed since he has had to deal with health issues that have been causing considerable pain. …Read More

3 Tips for Paying Down Holiday Debt

With the average person spending an estimated $1,250 on holiday purchases during the 2018 festivities, it’s likely that many consumers will be dealing with holiday debt as January progresses. While you can find lots of advice for paying down debt with a few internet searches, many of the best strategies can be boiled down to three basic tips.   Get Organized   The key to nearly any successful venture — …Read More

#AskanExpert: Too Many Credit Cards, How do I Avoid Bankruptcy?

Q. I have gotten myself into too many credit card payments. The amounts owed are relatively small but I have 13 of them! I just missed the monthly payment on 3 of them. Can I get a loan to pay them? I also have a loan for $2500 and have been charged almost $1800 in fees since February. Is there anything I can do to save myself from bankruptcy? Dear …Read More

Should You Open a Store Credit Card for Holiday Shopping?

Whether you’re tackling your holiday shopping in-store or online, chances are good you’ll be offered at least a few store credit cards this season. And those offers can be extremely tempting, full of alluring words like “20% off,” “free shipping,” and, perhaps the most appealing of all, “0% financing.”   But, as attractive as these offers can be, store credit cards aren’t always the innocent beacons of savings that their …Read More

#AskanExpert: My Debt Payment’s Too High, What Can I Do?

Q. I have $27,000 in debt (non-secured signature loans) at $1612/month in payments. I am current on all my bills, but the budget is increasingly difficult to maintain. At my current pace, I won’t be out of debt for 3 years. What can I do?   Dear Reader, Every debt repayment plan requires time, a strong budget and persistence, especially if you want to pay it off quickly. Most successful debt …Read More

#AskanExpert: Why is a Home Equity Loan so Hard to Get?

Q. We’ve used our credit cards too much and gotten ourselves into a stressful situation. We make a decent income, but the monthly payments are putting financial strain on our budget. We would like to get a home equity loan to pay off all these cards and just have one payment, but we do not qualify for a new loan due to our debt-to-income ratio. Not too long ago, my …Read More

#AskanExpert: Retiring, $40,000 in Credit Card Debt, No Savings, What Should I Do?

Q. I’m 65 years old and my wife is 59. We’ve got about $40,000 in credit card debt and are planning to pay about 90% of it off with remaining 401k money. We live on a tight budget and will have basically no savings. The cost of living is high where we live and I don’t know what to do. Please help.   Dear reader,   I understand the urgency …Read More

#AskanExpert: Can I Back Out of a Debt Settlement Program?

Q. In March of 2018, I decided to go through a debt settlement program. Big regret! The program they put me on is for 5 years. They have settled with one company thus far and they take their settlement fee off the top which is more than the monthly amount they are paying the creditor. Their method is baffling. I feel I made a bad decision and was wondering if …Read More

#AskanExpert: How Can I Speak to Creditors About Hardship When Starting a New Job?

Q: I’m currently a graduate student and I am a few months behind on credit card payments and loans. I just signed a contract for a job and I won’t start getting paid for a couple months. How could I speak to my creditors about this? Dear Reader, Meeting your financial obligations when you don’t have an income can be very challenging. Now that you are transitioning to a new …Read More

Debt Tips for Veterans

When you’re in debt, it can feel like you’re never going to climb your way out. Toss in the challenge of transitioning out of the military and into a new chapter of your life, and debt can seem even more insurmountable.   In a recent survey of military and veteran family members by the Military Family Advisory Network, more than 90 percent of respondents reported facing some form of debt. …Read More