If you have significant balances on your credit cards, you should work to reduce those expenses. Continuing to pay only the minimum required payment doesn’t significantly decrease your balance since interest compounds on credit cards. Instead of paying only the minimum monthly payment, you should make a long-term commitment to paying off your credit cards.
The best way to pay down credit card debt is to develop a financial plan and stick to it. First find out exactly who you owe, how much you owe, and what the interest rate is for each balance. Some credit cards offer a teaser rate if you transfer a balance. Consider doing this only if the interest rate represents a significant savings and if you are totally committed to paying off all of your cards. You may also consider contacting your credit card companies individually to explain that you are looking for lower rates. In some cases, credit card companies may be able to offer a revised repayment schedule.
Once you know exactly what you owe and how much the interest rates are, develop your plan. At an absolute minimum, you must make the required payment on each card, each and every month. Then, any extra money you have left over should be applied to the balance of the card that has the highest interest rate. Keep in mind that while your credit card payment is due monthly, there is absolutely nothing preventing you from making multiple payments per month. In fact, making extra payments during the month is a great way to reduce the interest due each month.
While you are working to reduce your credit card balances, it’s essential that you also commit to changing your behavior and stop using your credit cards. Using your cards while you are trying to pay them off just compounds your problem. Consider seeking help from a certified credit counselor if you are feeling overwhelmed. While paying down debt may seem difficult, becoming debt free is possible with the right plan.