If you have zero credit card debt, move along. (Also, kudos to you.) But if you do have credit card debt, whether it’s massive or small, the amount weighs on you. In honour of Credit Card Reduction Day on March 21, we spoke with John Shmuel, managing editor and senior writer of LowestRates.ca and Alyssa Furtado, CEO of Ratehub.ca to get the low down on how to cut down. If you want that money-sucking monkey off your back, these are the steps you can take to eliminate your debt, and how you can take action so it doesn’t happen again.
Commit to cutting your spending
For inspiration, Furtado recommends Cait Flanders' book, The Year of Less, which chronicles the author's vow to quit shopping for a year to pay off $30,000 in consumer debt.
Make a budget
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Get another job
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Use some of your savings
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Eliminate the things you don’t need
Use the Debt Avalanche method
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Use the Debt Snowball method
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Use a balance transfer card
Use a low-interest card for your everyday spending
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Choose the right financial products
As for insurance, he recommends using comparison websites to research prices. "Your quoted rate can differ significantly from provider to provider.
Banks and insurance companies charge all kinds of fees that you can rid yourself of if you head online and compare your options."
Don’t limit yourself to one place
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Work with a financial planner
Steer clear of predatory lenders
Create an emergency fund
Set up automatic savings
Avoid lifestyle inflation
Don’t ignore your debt
Invest in yourself
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