Credit Card Relief: 4 Steps To Balance Your Finances

by : David Faulkner

Credit cards have become a necessary evil. In the United States and in many other places around the world, you can use credit cards to purchase products or services without the need for cash. This convenience is the main reason why people everywhere have become so addicted to charging their purchases, usually without stopping to think if they have the means to pay for it in the future.

This recklessness in shopping has resulted in thousands of people getting overwhelmed by credit card debt. At the end of the month, you will not only be billed for the actual purchases that you made but you also have to take into consideration the high interest rates that usually come with credit cards. In no time at all, the interest will keep piling up until you are engulfed by a mountain of debt.

You might feel pretty desperate when your debt reaches, say, $20,000. However, it's not the end of the world just because you're a few payments behind on your credit card. Relief is still very possible if you follow these simple steps.

1. Determine your household's income.

If you are working towards credit card relief, the first thing you have to do is to determine exactly how much your family or household earns in a month or in a year. This includes all regular salaries and any income from businesses or part-time jobs. Once you determine this figure, it should be pretty obvious that you must not spend more than that amount.

2. Find out where your money is going.

Sum up your family's regular expenses. If the total is too close to your income figure or even exceeds it, then you have to make drastic reductions in your spending. You will be surprised at the amount of credit card relief you can have just by eating in during weekdays, or taking the bus every other day, or by coloring your own hair. These are just small sacrifices to make so you can have the credit card relief you are craving for.

3. Use your credit card wisely.

You have to learn how to be more prudent in using your credit card. Relief will only come if you can control your shopping impulses and buy only things that are necessary. As much as possible, pay for small purchases in cash. You don't really need to use your credit card to buy a magazine or a loaf of bread.

4. Contact your credit card company.

Nobody can provide more credit card relief for you than the company itself. All you have to do is get on the phone with your credit card company representative and request for a lower interest rate. It may sound like a brazen thing to do but you might be surprised that most credit card companies would be very happy to grant your request. For them, it is definitely better for you if you pay them at a lower interest than to never pay them at all.