Debt Consolidation Advice: Recover from Credit Card, Personal Loan and Other Financial Arrears

Debt Consolidation Advice: Recover from Credit Card, Personal Loan and Other Financial Arrears

Everyone is looking to save money on various financial payments, but when debt arrives many people immediately turn for help in order to get out of monetary trouble. Unpaid bills, credit card debt, and personal loan debt can mount over time if not monitored properly and carefully.

However, debt consolidation can be the answer to these financial issues. Learn how to recover from debt and begin a fresh financial outlook.

Debt Consolidation

When an individual finds the idea of paying off multiple debts to be overwhelming, debt consolidation is a capable option. Many times a person can be swarmed by credit card debt, unpaid/overdue bills, and personal loan debt. An individual may reach the conclusion that paying off all the debt…is simply not possible.

This financial plan allows an individual to only make a single monthly payment. The debt that has accumulated from several different places and factors is now joined into one payment. This simple restructuring allows the individual to get a better grasp and handle on his or her fiscal situation.

Credit Card, Personal Loan, and other Paperwork

The next step in the process is to meet with a debt consolidation expert. However, before a person takes that step, it’s vital to gather all the necessary paperwork. Get the contact information of all the creditors, and gather each and every necessary document to present to the debt consolidation expert. This is yet another reason to save all financial paperwork.


When this debt option is being considered, it is paramount that an individual have all the proper records and documents of his or her financial debt history. In order to be helped, an individual must first stay on top of his or her financial standing.

Debt Consolidation Company and Debt Strategy

When an individual has found the proper debt consolidation company, he or she can now be advised how to handle the situation. The company will make note of the total debt in all areas, including credit card, personal loan or any other financial hardship. The company will also make note of how much an individual can actually afford to pay per month.

The payment plan will then be constructed around the total debt and the total income. Everyone is unique, so a specific plan will have to be developed and understood. The individual’s debt consolidation advisor will speak with every creditor listed, and will work in conjunction with each one to establish an agreed upon financial plan.

Advice on Reducing Debt: Reduce Debt with Strategic Planning and Money Saving

Advice on Reducing Debt: Reduce Debt with Strategic Planning and Money Saving

Reducing large debts can seem a daunting proposition, but with a little forward planning and prioritising it is possible to save considerable amounts. There are many ways to effectively reduce debt without resorting to debt consolidation companies.

When tackling the problem of reducing debt it is vital to know exactly how much is owed to which creditors and the different rates of interest. The most efficient way to reduce debt is to pay off high interest debts first.

How to Reduce Credit Card Debt

Many people owe money on more than one credit card. If this is the case it is important to prioritise which card the largest amount of money is sent to each month. By paying off the highest interest credit cards first the process of clearing debt is accelerated while interest charges are minimised.

It is vital to communicate with any creditors, including credit card companies. Most companies are happy to discuss alternative ways of reducing debt and may offer alternative repayment plans to suit particular financial situations.

Reducing Car Finance Debt

Shop around for competitive loan rates and consider paying off the remaining balance of a car loan at a lower rate of interest. When buying a car dealers may give the impression that finance has to be taken out with them, but this is not always the case. Do not be afraid to contact alternative finance companies and to negotiate with the dealer for a better rate of interest.

Reducing Mortgage Debt

For most people a mortgage is the largest debt they will ever have. Arranging a mortgage where additional payments can be made (assuming extra funds are available) allows homeowners the opportunity to pay off the debt sooner. Renting out an unused room in the house to a lodger can bring in considerable extra income, which can then be put towards further reducing debts.

Ways to Reduce Household Bills

Reducing monthly outgoings is a great way of freeing up more money to tackle outstanding debts. Simple measures can go a long way to cutting bills. Normal light bulbs can be replaced with more efficient energy saving examples. Ensuring a home is properly insulated means that heating will be required less often and at a lower setting.

Debt Helplines and Charities

There are many organisations and charities which specialise in debt reduction advice. They often have a debt help line which anyone can phone for free advice. An example of this is the National Debt Helpline in the UK. An internet search for debt helpline numbers will return a large selection of results. Likewise, debt help charities are also well represented on the web.

The main aim when reducing debt should be to pay what is owed in the shortest time, while minimising interest charges. Debt consolidation is an attractive proposition for many people, but is best used as a last resort. Although monthly payments will be greatly reduced by a debt consolidation company and they will offer an attractive interest rate the total amount repayable will usually be considerably more, stretched over a much longer period of time. Before embarking on any debt reduction plan it is advisable to consult a qualified financial advisor.

Book Review – The Credit Crunch Cookbook: Delicious Recipes and Clever Ideas for Cooking on a Budget

Book Review – The Credit Crunch Cookbook: Delicious Recipes and Clever Ideas for Cooking on a Budget

There is more to spending less on food than cutting back on takeaway and giving up luxuries like decadent desserts and expensive ingredients. The Credit Crunch Cookbook (Hamlyn) offers a collection of recipes and tips to help singles, couples and families save money in the kitchen by wasting less, being more organised and shopping more efficiently.

Cooking on a Budget

Many householders know that they need to spend less on groceries and meals, but it can be difficult to know where to start to cut back on expensive shopping and cooking habits.

Filled with practical, economical recipes and a large collection of tips for reducing waste, being more organised in the kitchen and saving money when shopping for groceries, The Credit Crunch Cookbook is ideal for those who want to make changes to their spending habits, but don’t know how.

Recipes are divided into three sections covering family meals, entertaining and make-at-home restaurant meals:

  • Budget Basics (light meals, main meals, sweet things),
  • Impress for Less (starters, sides, mains, desserts)
  • Dine In (Italian, Mexican, Indian, Thai, Chinese)

Recipes are easy to prepare, featuring readily available ingredients and easy to follow step-by-step instructions. There are no photos of completed dishes. Recipes are generally suitable for both children and adults and include:

  • Beef and ginger salad
  • Spaghetti carbonara
  • Meatballs in spicy sauce
  • Pumpkin and root vegetable stew
  • Chicken and spinach potato pie
  • Steak and mushroom pie
  • Tomato and green been salad
  • Pears with chocolate crumble
  • Caramelized orange and pineapple

Spending Less on Groceries and Meals

There is more to reducing the grocery budget than swapping to cheaper alternatives for favourite ingredients. The Credit Crunch Cookbook includes a collection of practical and easy to follow tips to reduce food waste, increase organisation at meal times and making sure that meals are prepared efficiently.

Helpful kitchen tips include reducing food waste by using leftovers and planning meals in advance. Writing a menu plan and thinking about the amount of food required for each meal can significantly limit waste and thereby reduce grocery costs. Suggestions for using leftover yoghurt, eggs, potato, rice, pasta, bread and cheese for using leftover vegetables and other ingredients are included.

Other tips include reducing food costs by buying fruit and vegetables in season and storing food correctly in the pantry and freezer. There are hints on how to save money by saving energy and water when preparing meals and tips for shopping wisely.

The Credit Crunch Cookbook encourages readers to be organised as well as economical. With planning, the book advises that it is possible to serve a romantic dinner for two for the same cost as an everyday meal and to feed hungry children and picky eaters without blowing the weekly shopping budget on expensive snack foods.

Save Money by Getting Organised in the Kitchen

Ultimately, the best way to save money at home is to be organised and plan ahead in all areas, including buying groceries and preparing meals. The Credit Crunch Cookbook offers tips for preparing a meal plan to reduce unnecessary grocery purchases and includes a sample budget menu for a weekly meal plan, romantic dinner for two and a dinner party menu for no-fuss entertaining on a budget.

The Credit Crunch Cookbook contains more than 100 recipes and numerous tips for better household budgeting. It is a practical resource for all homes and is an ideal housewarming gift for a new homeowner.

Budgeting With Quicken

Budgeting With Quicken

On the first day of the year, I sat down at my computer and began to put our family budget on the computer. I promised myself I would do that one day and when our new computer came with the necessary software on it, I could find no more excuses. I was a little intimidated but I soon got the hang of it and have come to really like keeping my budget on the computer. If you are considering using budgeting software, read on and maybe your decision will be made a bit easier. As I mentioned, my computer came with the Quicken software. It also came with Microsoft Money. I knew nothing about either one of these programs so I took some time to explore them both. After playing in each program for a while, I decided Quicken seemd a little more like what I was looking for and I liked the way it was set up. The one drawback I found was not having an instruction manual since the software came with the computer. To help with this problem, I began copying the Help Menus as I used them. This way, I could put all of them into a Quicken file and easily refer to them whenever necessary. I also found some articles on using Quicken at www.stretcher.com. You can find all of the articles if you go to the author index and look up Karen Jones. These articles gave me some great ideas for additonal ways to use the Quicken software as well as some tips that I didn’t find in the Help Menus.

Aside from being able to put numbers into the computer and have them “magically” calculated for me, I also like being able to show a transfer of money between my accounts with the click of a button. I am still figuring out all of the features available for tracking investments, but I can tell you that I am looking forward to using the internet and Quicken to instantly update my investments. However, the best part about using budgeting software is being able to create reports that show me where my money has gone and what my monthly/yearly budget looks like.

If you decide to keep your budget on your computer, I must pass on this very important advice. Back-up all of your work! I failed to do this and then had to start all over on our accounts and budget after the hard drive blew up in our computer. Although it was a lesson I learned the hard way, I’m grateful I learned it in February and not in November.