Excessive credit card debt is a serious problem for many families in
America. In recent times, this problem has been exacerbated by
worsening economic conditions. Credit cards are convenient money
management tools that can help finance home improvements, higher
education, and other short term cash flow requirements. However,
credit cards do offer a temptation to live beyond one's means and run up
large outstanding balances. Unexpected medical expenses and job
losses are other common reasons for running up credit card balances
quickly. In these situations, the resulting credit card debt can
become difficult to manage, and in extreme situations, filing for
personal bankruptcy may be the only solution available.
However, in most cases, help is available. You may be able to
negotiate lower interest rates with your creditors for your outstanding
balances. Credit counseling services may be able to work out a
budget with you and negotiate with lenders on your behalf for lower
interest rates, extended payment schedules, or even debt reduction.
You may also be able to consolidate high interest rate credit card debt
into a lower rate home equity loan. However, a home equity loan
typically requires a lien on your house, and the lender may foreclose
if you do not make payments on your home equity loan.
CreditCardDebt.us features a directory of credit counseling and
debt consolidation resources. You are encouraged to read
the referenced FTC articles about credit and debt. Before signing
any finance or loan agreement, read its terms and conditions carefully,
and consult with your attorney if you have any questions or concerns.
If you have ever applied for a credit card, a personal loan,
or insurance, a credit file, known as a "credit report" exists for you.
Learn where to obtain a government-authorized free credit report. www.Consumer.FTC.gov
The National Foundation for Credit Counseling, through its
member agencies, sets a national standard for quality credit counseling,
debt reduction services and education for financial wellness. www.NFCC.org