How to get Credit Card Debt under Control

Credit card debt is something that millions of people are struggling to get under control.  Either these people choose to ignore the situation or just have not implied the necessary tools to make their financial goals work for them.  Though getting your debt under control is not easy, it is worth it in the long run.  So if you want to find yourself in a better monetary situation, follow these steps to get control back in your financial life.

Gather your Statements

Start getting your credit card debt under control by gathering all of your credit card statements.  This is the best way to get a reality check on how much debt you really have.  Total all your debt up and look at your interest rates.  If you have a problem with debt it will be painfully obvious once you do this.  So sit down and take a real look at your financial situation.

Stop Spending

Hopefully, looking at your debt problem has you motivated and maybe even a little scared.  Use these feelings to help you make a commitment to stop spending money on credit.  Cut up your credit cards, or at least put them in a block of ice in the freezer so they are hard to get at.  If you do not have your credit card with you it is much harder to get further into debt.  So put those credit cards away and forget you have that line of credit that got you into this situation in the first place.

Create a Budget

If you are like many people with uncontrolled credit card debt, you probably got there because you did not have a budget in place.  If you do not have a budget you are much more likely to spend more than you make and then fill the financial gaps with credit cards.  So if you want to stop this cycle, sit down and create a basic budget that you can stick to.  Write down every expense that you have, to include all the minimum payments on your credit cards.  If the total of those expenses is more than your income, then it is time to start cutting back until you can pay for those needs with cash.  Once you do this you will find you need your credit cards less and less.

Make Extra Money

Now that your credit cards are put away and you are living within your means, it is time to start making some extra money.  Start putting in extra hours at work, find a second job or start mowing lawns and babysitting to bring in more money.  This money will be used to pay off your debt and create a financial cushion between you and emergencies that might come up.  Just make sure that you do not start spending that money on things you do not need.  Put your extra money toward your debt and in an emergency fund to ensure you do not go back to your credit card cycle.

Pay More than the Minimum

Once you have the extra money coming in, use it to start paying down your debt.  Apply money every month toward the credit card with the highest interest rate.  If you only make the minimum payment you will be paying on that steak dinner you had for the next 30 years.  So start making it a habit to put as much money as you can toward getting your debt under control.

Once you have worked through these steps, continue to apply them throughout your life.  You have worked hard to get your credit card debt under control, so do not go back to your old ways.  Though it may be hard now, in the long run it will make your life easier.  So keep going, you will be glad you did.