The chart below, taken from the NY Federal Reserve’s Regional Household Credit Snapshot shows the percent of consumers that have five different types of loans, as well as the average balance for those who do have loans.
Remember, this does not include other bills and debt, such as medical debt.
While this tactic doesn’t really consolidate your debt, or bills, it is an effective way of paying off your debt in a fast and orderly manner.
For example, instead of renting did you buy a home?
Your home mortgage loan is a great way to build equity and live in a home of your own.
In fact, if you have bad credit, then your debt consolidation options are very limited. Here are examples of four ways to consolidate your debt and how they mesh with different financial goals.
Do-It-Yourself / Optimize Payments: If you have extra money coming in each month, good savings, and decent interest rates, then you can add extra money each month to your monthly payments.
Think about which of the following goals is most important to you; Also, think about your personal financial situation and how you can realistically meet any goals that you set.
If you are struggling with minimum payments, then protecting your credit is not realistic. However, that solution is only going to work if you have strong enough credit to qualify for low interest rates.Think of your debt as an overall part of your financial picture.Is your debt helping you increase your overall financial well-being?It will entail making a firm commitment to a fixed monthly payment, so make sure that you can afford the payments.Credit Counseling and Debt Management Plan (DMP): If you can make minimum payments and commit to a fixed payment then a DMP program can help by reducing your interest rates on your credit cards.With this method you can get out of debt quicker, protect and build your credit, and reduce your overall financial costs.