Kick-Start Your Stalled Career in the UAE

When money is tight and the job promotion prospects on a scale of 1 to 10 stand at something less than zero, maybe it’s time to look at pastures new for that next all-important corporate leg-up. After all, you’ve got the degree, the business skills and the experience to match. Why not make the most of them in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)?

Could be the move you’ve been waiting for, the opportunity to kick-start the stalled career. But if lack of cash is likely to hold you back, you can always apply for an HSBC personal loan to tide you over – assuming, of course, you bank with HSBC in the first place. If not, there are a number of other equally familiar multinationals operating both in the US and the UAE who may be able to offer you a bank loan. Go check them out.

Salary, a subject worth talking about, or not. Read on. Sales manager job in the USA typically pays around $25,000 a year. Same sort of job in the UAE pays an average of $60,000 a year. Big, big difference! But here’s the disclaimer. The salary figures quoted are purely for illustrative purposes only and not meant to represent a definitive statement of fact – or words to that effect. Hopefully, you get the drift. Comparing jobs and salaries in different countries is a bit like comparing apples, oranges and hot dogs. Kind of pointless!

However, one thing very much worth talking about is tax, personal tax, or the lack of it. Personal taxes in the UAE don’t amount to a tin of beans. Yep, you read it right, not a tin of beans, nada, zilch, zero. Wow!

But – sorry to burst the proverbial bubble – US citizens and resident aliens are taxed on their worldwide income. So says the IRS. However, some taxpayers may qualify for the foreign earned income exclusion and foreign housing exclusion, or foreign housing deduction, if:

  • Their tax home is in a foreign country.
  • They are US citizens who are a bona fide resident of a foreign country or countries for an uninterrupted period that includes an entire tax year. They are US resident aliens who are a citizen or national of a country with which the United States has an income tax treaty with a non-discrimination article in effect and who is a bona fide resident of a foreign country or countries for an uninterrupted period that includes an entire tax year.
  • They are US citizens and resident aliens who are physically present in a foreign country or countries for at least 330 full days during any period of 12 consecutive months.

Got all of that? You might even be able to deduct away from home expenses for the likes of travel, meals and lodging. However, big suggestion coming up.

Check everything out beforehand with a financial adviser in order to save you a headache or two further down the road. Let’s face it, no one likes to talk about tax. But falling foul of the tax authorities is no walk in the park. You don’t want you and the career you cherish so much to end up behind bars!


Where Does Your Spouse’s Credit Card Debt Go When They Die?

It is not easy to help the surviving spouses deal with the financial burden after the death of their better half. The financial crisis that may come around immediately can be overwhelming when faced together with the emotional breakdown one has to suffer.

Before we find out whether the surviving spouse is responsible for late spouse’s credit card debt, take these three essential steps soon after a spouse’s death:

  • Contact creditors
  • Ask for credit report
  • Inform credit agencies

Once these steps are taken, you should check whether you are the bearer of the credit card debt of your spouse or not.

The region where you live and the account type will determine who is responsible for the remaining credit card debt after a person’s death. Here is some information you may find helpful:

Secondary Cardholders and Authorized Users

Whether the surviving spouse is the secondary cardholder or an authorized user, in both cases, the outstanding credit card payment are not be paid by him or her. In this case, the debt belongs only to the deceased and will be set of against the estate of the deceased.

Joint Account

In case of a joint account, where the account belongs to both the spouses, it becomes the responsibility of the surviving spouse to pay the outstanding balance. For spouses who have a joint account, the debts of the deceased are transferred on the name of surviving spouse. He or she can choose to continue to the account under his or her title or close it.

Individual Account

This is the tricky point. If the card was titled solely under the name of your spouse, you will not be considered responsible for paying the outstanding debts on credit card. However, debts and assets accrued during the period of asset are taken as joint property if you reside in a state that follows community-property law.

The ten states that follow this law include: Arizona, Alaska, Idaho, California, Nevada, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, Wisconsin and Washington. Living in any of these states will consider you responsible for the debt of credit card of your late spouse. Don’t forget to cross check with the laws of your state for more information.

Deceased’s Estate

In case the surviving spouse is not help responsible for the outstanding credit card payment, then the credit card payment is paid from deceased’s estate. If there are assets under the name of the deceased, the executor in charge of taking care of the assets will pay off the balance. However, if the assets are worth less than the outstanding balance, the credit card providers usually consider it as a debt loss and write it off by closing the credit card.

For example, for the outstanding balance of $10,000, the $1,000 worth of assets will not cover the entire amount. But since the company cannot ask for more after recovering $1,000, the remaining $9,000 will be written off.

Keep in mind the following important tips:

Educate Yourself – It is important to learn about credit cards and different policies to keep yourself secure from any such liability. Check the top websites and use them as a good resource with valuable information about different credit cards.

Know your Rights – Learn about the situations where you will be held responsible for your late spouse’s liabilities and vice versa. The Credit Card Act of 2009 has stated that the outstanding balance of credit card should be provided to the executor within thirty days of request. Also, the issuer has no right to charge annual fees or late fees when settling outstanding debt from the deceased’s estate.

The guidelines provided by the new Federal Trade Commission also restrict debt collectors to adopt an aggressive approach to the relatives of the decedents in order to recover the balance.

Get Legal Help – These doors are always open to you for help. In such cases, it may become imperative for you to learn about legal information. This information can be accessed from a website. You can seek assistance from an estate-planning attorney. They will help you through the procedure, legally.

It is important to possess some information on such important matters to relieve yourself from credit card debt of your late spouse.

Author’s Bio. Celina wants to help the general public deal with the emotional breakdown they suffer on the death of their loved ones along with dealing with the legal matters wisely, which can save them from undergoing financial crises. She recommends to check there’s more on credit card debt relief options at this website.


Ways of Getting Out of Debt

Sadly, for many people debt is a way of life these days. The cost of feeding a family, keeping your car on the road and paying a mortgage can quickly spiral out of control.

Sometimes, it can be a small thing which tips you over the edge – a broken down washing machine might not seem like a big deal, but it can be the straw that breaks the camel’s back leading to major problems.

Keeping up with repayments on credit cards and loans may be taking up all your spare income, which means when something goes wrong, you may be left with the choice of missing payments or going without a vital gadget. It is always a good idea to save for an emergency by opening a rainy day fund, but sometimes you don’t even have enough money in your budget to do that.

However, many people will be sitting on a source of cash they haven’t even considered. In many cases, unlocking the value of a property could be an ideal way to rapidly reduce debt levels and put them on the path to getting out of debt.

Many people view property transactions as a long drawn out process, but such problems can be avoided by selling your house quickly directly to a specialist company rather than searching for an individual buyer who may dropout without warning.

These dedicated property buyers can complete a deal for a home in a little as seven days, which could free up much needed cash to pay off debts.

For some people struggling with bills, it may make sense to unlock the value of their property and then use this cash to reduce expensive debts such as credit card borrowing and personal loans.

But obviously, if you are going to do this, accessing cash quickly may be a huge factor, which explains why some homeowners decide to sell their property to a specialist firm.

Paying off your debts in this manner won’t be suitable for everyone, in fact if your outstanding mortgage is more than your property is worth it won’t even be possible.

For some though, it could be the dream solution, especially if your children have left home and you want to move somewhere smaller but would like to get your debts under control at the same time.

So if the weight of debt is getting you down, why not think about all the ways you could lift that burden and then take positive steps which will take you towards a debt-free future.

Why not start right now?


Looking for a Loan? Tips to Get the Loan You Need

Looking for a loan?
Are you looking for a loan?

The year 2012 is a shaky year for finances. The economy is still sluggish, the job market is questionable and the credit scores of millions of Americans have taken a serious hit since the downturn of the economy in 2008. This makes looking for a loan in 2012 a slippery slope for many Americans. Even if you have impeccable credit history, you may still have a problem securing a loan for a rate that is affordable. Banks and other lenders are becoming stricter regarding who they will lend money to, meaning that if your credit score is phenomenal, you may be denied a loan because you have too much debt or because you work for yourself; plenty of other situations apply, as well.

Students – If you are looking for a student loan in 2012 you may have trouble finding one. Many banks are not offering private student loans anymore. Those that are require significant credit history with an impeccable score, meaning many students will need a parent or friend with excellent credit to cosign a loan on their behalf. The federal government does offer loans to students that do not require a credit check; these are called Stafford loans. These loans must be repaid once a student graduates or leaves school and they do not require a credit check or credit history.

Home buyers – Home loans are still being offered to people. Those that have less than perfect credit will need a large down payment or the help of a federal program to apply for a home loan. Additionally, home loans for people without exceptional credit will come with steep interest rates, making payments more expensive and the cost of the home much more over time. Still, many people without good credit are still managing to find a way to apply for a home loan in 2012.

Car shoppers – Vehicle loans are more difficult to get. Without a hefty down payment, many lenders and auto companies are unwilling to finance buyers for a new or used car unless they have perfect credit. This is leading to an increased number of vehicle sales through buy here pay here car dealerships, which often require at least 20 percent of the total cost of the vehicle up front; sometimes more.

Consolidation loans – Consolidation loans are loans that are big in 2012. Many people are looking to consolidate their finances by taking out a large lump sum loan in order to pay off their smaller debts; freeing up their income and making one large payment to their consolidation loan rather than several small payments for their debts. Consolidation loans are much easier to secure than a home loan or a vehicle loan and many people are opting for them.

Obtaining the type of loan you want or need in 2012 may be very easy or it could be a process; it all depends on your credit score and your personal finances. Always remember to shop around for the best rates for loans; banks and credit unions are a good starting point for obtaining loan information.

Photo  credit: alancleaver_2000


What Triggers Your Impulse Buying?

Quick reactions are a survival trait. When we began the long trek from our point of origin on Earth responding to threats, like lions, and opportunities, like deer, meant the difference between life and death. We owe our existence today to the quick reactions of our forebears.

Those hunters reactions survive in us today. They make us good drivers or excellent at games like table-tennis. They make us adept and alert, able to spot targets instantaneously and react with lightning speed. They can also fill our cupboards with stuff we neither need or really want. Quick reactions aren’t a survival requirement on a shopping trip.

Are you an impulse shopper?

impulse shopping
Are you an impulse shopper?

Being aware of the wiring that makes us impulse buy can help us bring it under control. Shopping with the hunter’s mindset feels rewarding if we’ve camped on the pavement at the start of the sales but isn’t as rewarding if every target has been stunned before we arrive. That rush of tension which we feel when we spot something desirable comes from the same place as the impulse to freeze when our prey is spotted. For a second or two we hold our breath. And then we pounce. It’s over in seconds. That hunter’s instinct is satisfied. We’ve bagged another trophy.

On the plains of Africa hunters could wander for days before finding something lunch-worthy. In a shopping center it’s hard to wander for a minute without going “Oooooo, I wonder how much that is?”

As hunters ourselves we should consider this. Have we wandered into someone else’s trap? Retail outlets today are designed like wonderful mazes with a delightful surprise around every corner. It’s almost like they know we’re coming.

Impulse buying is unsatisfying because we put so little into it. There’s a cost, of course, but if we’re hammering plastic that cost is deferred. It can even lead to omniomania, or a shopping addiction. The real downside is that feeling of doubt. Outside on the pavement, loaded down with bags it starts to creep in. It carries on when we get home and survey our spoils. Do we really need this stuff? Some of us go so far as to squirrel away recent purchases, hoping that partners or loved ones won’t spot them. Bags are folded away neatly and stuffed in the garbage. It’s almost like nothing has happened. But of course something has happened. We’ve hammered the plastic and there’s a bill coming soon.

Even if we’ve shopped carefully, that bill is going to be unpleasant because unless it’s settled immediately all of the supposed savings are going to be wiped out by interest. Borrowing to “save” money is a truly terrible strategy but it’s what we do when we impulse buy a ‘bargain’. To hunt effectively we need to be light on our feet, not weighed down by debt. If price tags in store were able to show us the real cost perhaps we could check that hunter’s instinct for a second or two and think carefully before bagging another trophy.

Photo credit: Annie Mole


The Lo(an) Down – A loan guide

More and more people are turning to loans for an extra boost of cash in these tough times – but it’s a risky game to play. Statistics from the Federal Reserve indicate consumer debt, such as money borrowed from credit cards and loans, stood at nearly $2.4 trillion in 2010 – nearly $7,800 for every person in the U.S. The good news is consumers are working hard to dig themselves out of debt. Figures from the American Bankers Association show that the US consumer delinquency rate (late credit repayments) fell in second quarter of last year and suggest that individuals are wising up to the dangers of late or missed loan repayments.

Loan Guide – Types of Loans

Our loan guide below has been designed to explain the various types of loans available on the market so consumers can know exactly what they are getting themselves into when searching for a loan.

Unsecured loan

An unsecured loan is one which is backed against no particular asset – this can be compared to a secured loan which is usually secured or guaranteed against a property. Due to the current financial climate, unsecured loans which were once readily available are now harder to come by. Despite this, borrowers wanting smaller loans over a shorter period of time will find an unsecured loan their best option. As a rule of thumb, unsecured loans are more readily available for smaller amounts of money usually up to $25,000 as there is less at stake for the lender. Although there is much less of a risk of having your assets repossessed should you fail to meet repayments, you may however pay a higher interest rate than that of on a secured loan.

Secured loan

A secured loan, also known as a homeowner loan, is borrowed money which is secured an asset – something of financial value – that you own such as a property. Banks and lenders are more willing to lend if a loan can be backed against an asset, particularly on larger amounts from $40,000 plus, because it proves less risky for themselves.

Our current economic situation means that lenders are much more cautious lending out unsecured loans for which they have no guarantee of repayment. As a result, secured loans – which were once considered as a last resort option – are now in use more than ever. Indeed, if you are a borrower with a less than perfect credit history it is now much easier to access a loan which is secured against your property. Although the consequence of late or failure to meet repayments can be severe – at worse your home could be at risk of repossession – you may be charged less interest on a secured loan compared to an unsecured one.

Other loans also fall underneath the secured loan category and will depend on your mortgage status; a second charge loan is one that is secured against a mortgaged household, whereas a first charge is one secured against a property in which the mortgage has been wholly repaid, or in other words, owned outright.

Auto Title Loan

An auto title loan is a specific type of secured loan which is guaranteed by the borrower’s vehicle. The amount borrowed is usually based on the value of the car. Auto title loans typical have term (the repayment time frame) of one month and loan sizes usually range between $600 and $2,500.

Payday loan

Payday loans, also known as cash advances, are small unsecured loans which are usually paid back by the borrowers next pay check. Best used as a short-term loan solution, they are often used for paying unexpected large bills. Borrowers should be aware that payday loans which are not paid back promptly are at a very high risk of spiraling out of control. Some lenders are known to offer the loans with interest rates costs regularly exceeding 30% a month with hefty late or missed repayment charges to boot. Although hugely controversial in the US – a number of states have passed laws capping maximum interest rates – a payday loan is still a viable borrowing option if used with caution.

Consolidation loan

Consolidation loans, also known as debt consolidation, is a method of combining a number of existing loans into one single new loan. Used carefully, it can often be a good way of controlling your finances by managing and monitoring multiple and often confusing loan repayments and deadlines. They can also potentially lower monthly repayments by offering smaller interest rates and by spreading the repayments over a longer period of time – although this means you may pay more in the long run.

Whilst it may be best to avoid borrowing money wherever possible, sometimes our financial circumstances mean that you will need that extra cash injection. 0% interest, or interest free loans, are particularly rare to come by these days which means that you will always be paying more than the original amount you borrow. Whichever loan you chose, always read the terms and conditions of your contract; weigh up both the positive and negative aspects and make an informed decision.


Fake Credit Cards

As promised, I continue to dig for potential threats to the financial integrity of American consumers. Most recently I reported on scammers spoofing caller ID numbers of Chase and Bank of America cardholders to gain access to sensitive information to steal from consumers. Now we are taking a look at fake credit cards – how they are made and how to avoid becoming a victim to these identity and credit card thieves.

There are many ways that crooks can illegally obtain account numbers – via stolen mail, dumpster diving, scamming at the register, skimming email, breaching retail accounts, etc. Once they have the account numbers, the thief sells them to another who then assembles fake cards, which are quickly used to rack up huge amounts debt. Many people are not aware there’s a problem until they get a call from the credit card company about suspicious transactions.

  • Recoding Cards: An actual card is required for crooks to use this method to fake a legitimate account. The information on the magnetic stripe is recoded to tap a stolen account without reflecting that information on the front of the card. In essence, it looks legit with the user’s name but purchases are charged against a stolen account number. To make it more difficult to recognize a fraudulent account, they’ll make an ID from another state, knowing that most people won’t be able to discern a fake ID from a real one.
  • Cloning Duplicates: In this situation, the thief takes the stolen account number and imprints it onto a blank card and uses it as the original. Cloning a credit card takes seconds. While a card is being swiped for payment – dishonest staff can swipe the card details which are downloaded on the computer. A duplicate card is made and until your next credit card statement arrives to alert you the cloner can spend at will.
  • Faking Gift Cards: This is one of the more ingenious ways to steal using credit cards. Counterfeit gift cards are imprinted with the stolen number. Merchants think nothing of accepting what appears to be a legitimate gift voucher to pay for a purchase, while all the while they’re actually paying with someone’s stolen credit card account. Requiring no identification, fake gift cards are difficult to track; the perpetrators can perform the embossing from the trunk of a car and are known to travel across the country to perform their fraud.

Financial institutions work to keep ahead of the latest scams online and off. The Federal Trade Commission offers educational resources like the articles “Avoiding Credit and Charge Card Fraud” on their website to help consumers avoid becoming a victim. Credit card companies also are actively involved in preventing fraud. If you are a victim, contact the institutions involved and file a complaint with the FTC or call 1.877.382.4357. The FTC enters Internet, telemarketing, identity theft, and other fraud-related complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 1,600 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.


Top 5 Telltale Signs That You’re A Credit Card Abuser

Once upon a time, credit shared a correlative relationship with how much someone was “good for”—essentially what he or she could afford to pay back over an extended period of time. These days, just about anyone can open a line of credit, and with retail stores, hotel chains, and airlines offering specialty cards, it’s almost too easy to find yourself with a wallet full of cards and no cash. Getting a credit card is simple; keeping balances low and paying making monthly payments towards one or more cards is challenging, yet nevertheless imperative.

A responsible individual will maintain constant vigilance when using credit cards: He or she knows the balances for each card; sets limits for spending; and keeps track of due dates. Not engaging in these behaviors could lead to the slippery slope of negligent spending. Missing a payment will cause an interest rate to skyrocket and will bury someone underneath a mountain of debt if  not careful. Neglecting to pay off your balances is precarious. If any of the following behaviors describe you, you may be a credit card abuser.

1. The line between need and want has become indistinguishable. You have unworn clothes or items still in original packaging. You buy perishable food in mass quantities because “it’s a good deal”, and then throw away the majority of it when it spoils. You don’t have to be so tightfisted as to only purchase what you deem a necessity, but giving into your every whim is a sign you are a compulsive shopper. When compulsive shopper’s expenses are larger than his or her income, credit cards seem like a quick and easy source for cash.

2. Credit cards balances are growing. Ideally, all purchases charged should be paid off every month. Paying your credit card off each month demonstrates an understanding of how to live within your means, and it keeps you from owing interest. People who mismanage money tend to have an ever expanding debt accumulating. Even if you are making the minimum payment every month, it covers little more than the interest accrued and leaves your balance, the source of your debt, virtually untouched.

3. All your credit cards have been maxed out. Your solution to free up some credit is to open a new card instead of paying off your current balance like a responsible person. A rational individual would recognize the need to pay off the balance of a maxed out card. A credit card abuser, conversely, sees a maxed out card as an opportunity to open a new line of credit.

4. The amount owed is a mystery to you. Advances in technology make it almost impossible for someone to be unaware of your finances. Computers allow us to transfer funds and monitor our money with just a few clicks of a button. Most major banks have smart phone applications that allow instant access to accounts. Regardless if you have no idea how much money you owe because either you do not checking your balance or you spend money so fast you have a knack for wearing out your cards’ magnetic strip, it’s irresponsible.

5. Lying about finances has become a normal occurrence. Distorting your ability to handle money is reckless; furthermore, it has the potential to destroy relationships and trust. You have developed the habit of sprinting to the mailbox to snag the credit card bills and collections notices to save face from your roommates. You tell your mom you got a “great deal” on the new phone you really couldn’t afford so she won’t castigate you for poor spending habits. When you share financial responsibilities with a family or roommate, it is best (maybe not the easiest) to be upfront when it comes to money. Dishonesty concerning your economic situation leads to unnecessary stress and strains on relationships and friendships.


Be A Credit Card Connoisseur

It’s not difficult to see why there are over 60 million cards now in circulation in the UK, as many people are tempted by the lure of free credit. But as national and personal debt seems to spiral out of control on both sides of the Atlantic, there never has been a more pressing reason or time to get sensible with your finances. Credit cards and the term ‘debt’ have unfortunately become intrinsically embroiled with one another. However, with a bit of financial common-sense, credit cards can be a useful method of purchasing without leading to debt.

When used correctly, credit cards do give their users various advantages such as the opportunity to purchase items on credit, paying for them at a later date. This may be handy if your next pay check is not due for another 3 weeks as buying an item on a credit card may give you up to 60 days interest free credit before you must pay the outstanding amount.

Credit cards also offer their users extra consumer protection compared to that of a debit card. This may prove invaluable when something goes wrong as your credit card provider should be able to offer a refund. This proved invaluable for many holiday makers last year as many travel companies went into administration and flights were cancelled due to the volcanic ash cloud. It might also be worth mentioning that credit cards have got many a holiday maker out of difficult situations abroad when other cards have been lost, stolen or rejected.

With these advantages in mind, it is of utmost importance to be aware of the terms and conditions on your credit card.

Be sure of the APR or Annual Percentage Rate of your card. This is the standard method of indicating the cost of borrowing and will vary from lender to lender, card to card. This will include the level of interest you will be paying. Lenders will usually entice users with an initial introductory offer of 0% interest for a certain period. It may be useful to set a reminder for when this period ends to make sure you will not be charged for any unpaid purchases, or to consider switching to a different deal.

Interest rates may also vary depending on the different uses of your card. For example, using your credit card for cash withdrawals, foreign currency transactions or credit card cheques may involve a larger interest rate, as well as an additional lender charge. It most cases it may be cheaper to find an alternative method of carrying out these transactions.

Charges may also be added regarding late payments and the credit limit, or the amount you are permitted to spend, on each particular card. The lender sets a limit to each credit card and higher risk borrowers such as students will have a lower credit limit than an academically trained professional. As well as a charge for breaching your credit limit you may find your card frustratingly refused and blocked until you contact your provider.

Finally, try not to fall into the habit of making minimum repayments. Whilst you are taking some action towards paying of your bill, the interest rates will be gradually increasing meaning that you will eventually pay more in the long run.

Using credit cards correctly can offer the user great deals and the freedom to ‘buy now, pay later’ but they need to be used with caution. Ensuring that monthly repayments are met builds a responsible profile with credit rating agencies, thus improving your credit rating and opening up future financial options such as loans and mortgages. At the other end of the scale, missed or late repayments can send you into a downward spiral, seriously damaging your credit rating and making it extremely difficult to get any further financial products.

This illustrates the importance of financial awareness and planning to avoid debt and huge problems in the future. There are ways of successfully managing your fiances, but there are also strategies in debt managing should you find yourself in trouble.


CNN Free Debt Planner Tool Allow Consumers To Predict Debt Payoffs

The news website maintained by offers headlines from around the world but it is also a resource for consumers who are struggling financially. People who have trouble paying their debts or truly realizing how much it is they owe out to creditors. With a full understand of one’s debt situation, there is little chance outstanding debt will be paid off or if it is, the time it takes will cost consumers a lot more than they imagined.

CNN’s website offers several money tools available at no cost to consumers who want to better manage their money. In particular, their Debt Planner tool offers the opportunity for consumers to calculate how much debt they owe and how long it will take to eliminate that debt. The tool makes it easy for consumers to figure out which payment options will eliminate debt in the fastest time period possible.

The Debt Planner tool is just one example of the kind of free information out there to support consumer goals of eliminating debt and managing money more efficiently. While some debt issues will necessitate third-party intervention (attorneys, debt assistance, debt counseling), the majority of consumers have the necessary tools at their disposal to repair past credit mistakes and work to eliminate the linger debts they have in their financial life. Using such tools as well as a budget not only helps consumers get their finances back on track, it helps them to keep their money matters moving forward positively.

Why Debt Elimination Timelines Matter

Consumers do not always understand the importance of pay debts off in the quickest manner. Many feel that as long as they are making payments, the debt will eventually come to an end satisfactorily. However, there is an urgency to eliminating debts as fast as you can because it will save you money.

Loans, credit cards, and other financial agreements involve interest rates. For each payment you make, only a portion of this money goes toward the principal of the amount you actually financed. The longer it takes you to pay off the balance of the loan or credit card, the more interest you accrue. Depending on the total of your balances due, you may end up spending thousands or more in finance charges. If you are able to orchestrate an early payoff, you’ll be able to save that money and put it somewhere useful like an interest-earning savings account.

Another benefit of early payoffs on debt is the affect it will have on your credit report. If you have struggled in the past making on-time payments towards your debts, your credit score likely experienced a drop. By paying off accounts and putting them back in good standing, your credit score and history will reflect a significant improvement with each debt you pay off in full.

Preparing for Payoff

Once you have utilized the Debt Planner tool, you need to sit down with your budget and see where you stand financially. It is highly recommended that you allocate as much cash as you can each month towards debt payoff. This may mean some sacrifices such as not eating out, reducing spending on clothing and things that are not included in the basic needs category, or even taking on a part time job to add supplemental income directly to your debt payoff planning.

As you free yourself from debt and repair your credit standing, the most important lesson to retain moving forward is to avoid debt in the future. Learn to balance your cash to prevent having to accrue debt. Implement a savings plan that will ensure your financial needs are covered and you will not have to end up facing debt issues you need to settle ever again.