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Managing credit card debt after the holidays

The holidays can be tough on families financially. From buying gifts, to entertaining family and friends, it is not uncommon for consumers to take on more than they can afford. For some families, the additional debt may be manageable, while for others it may be just the thing that pushes them over the financial cliff. The following is some advice for Tennessee readers struggling to repay credit card bills this holiday season:

According to news sources American consumers currently owe around $800 billion in credit card debt. This debt is reportedly topped only by student loan debt, which exceeded $1 trillion this year. Despite this fact, a recent survey showed that many families intended to take on even more credit card debt this holiday. In fact, consumers surveyed making less than $35,000 reported a willingness to take on around $700 in new debt for Christmas in 2013. What this means for any one family often depends on existing debt.

If consumers do over extend themselves this holiday season it is important to know that there are ways to manage debt. In cases where consumers have some discretion, paying off the credit card with the highest APR first, while continuing to pay the minimum on lower rate cards, is often a good move. Once the card with the highest APR is paid off, then move on to the next card with the highest rate. It is also a good idea to pay more than the minimum when possible. This can save consumers a lot of money in the long run.

Finally, if the debt proves to be too much, it might be time to speak with a debt relief professional. A debt relief professional may be able to help consumers facing financial challenges realistically review their debt, as well as provide some possible solutions. Since everybody's financial situation is unique, it is imperative to reach out and discusses your specific situation with a local debt relief professional today.

Source: Democrat and Chronicle, "Debt hangover follows holiday fun," Tom Tobin, December 29, 2013

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Mark T. Young & Associates
2895 Northpoint Blvd.
Hixson, TN 37343

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