Christmas is just around the corner, and with it a lot of expenses and end of year obligations. Keeping your Christmas budget in check is pretty easy if you plan in advance. You can shop early, make thoughtful gifts yourself such as edibles or scrapbooks, and decorate your house on a budget. The last thing you want is having to charge your Christmas spending on a credit card!
However, if you are really low on funds, there are ways to make the holidays easier on your wallet.
First, start by getting the current state of your debt. Who do you owe money to? That will include secured debt such as your mortgage, or a car loan, and anything else where your creditors can seize your possessions in order to collect what is owed to them. Then comes unsecured debt, which covers personal loans, credit cards, student loans and so on. You can find exactly how much you owe on your latest statement, and what interest rate and terms you carry on your debt.
Understanding these is very important, as it allows you to prioritize which debt you should get rid of first. It is usually the debt that carries the highest interest rate. However, you may also be able to refinance said debt for better terms, so you have more time to pay it off, and smaller instalments.
Head over to the new startup loanable for an easy way to apply for loans from different lenders, all under one roof. They won’t charge you an application fee and you will only have to fill out your details once. Then they’ll send out your request to different lenders and try to get you a match. It doesn’t matter that your credit score isn’t impeccable, you can still get loan offers.
An ideal way to accelerate payoffs on your credit cards is to refinance over to a 0% balance transfer credit card. That way, 100% of the payments you make every month are applied to the principal, and not the interest. Make sure you diarize the date on your calendar when the 0% deal expires, so you can either pay off the full balance, or look for another deal. 0% balance transfer cards generally revert to a pretty high interest rate so you don’t want to keep a balance there for longer than the 0% deal is.
Then, you can also pool all your debt under one loan. These are called consolidation loans. You get a new term, and a new rate. Usually, the rate is a bit lower than what you used to pay, and the total payment is lower than the sum of payments you used to make. But because you are getting a new term, you generally end up paying more money overall than if you had made your original payment. That is meant to be easier on your budget, and by no means a pass to accumulate more debt!
Finally, refinancing your mortgage can lead to a lower monthly payment and thousands less in interest over the next few years. Even a 0.25% different in interest rate will have a huge impact on your finances by the end of the loan’s life.
It is the time to enjoy the holidays, but not by burdening yourself financially! On the contrary, enjoy your time off to get your finances in order and start 2018 on the right foot!