Credit card debt is one of the most pervasive forms of debt in American society. In 2017, the total amount of credit card debt in the country exceeded $1 trillion. The average adult in the United States has over $6,000 in debt from credit cards.
Filing for bankruptcy is available to those unable to pay off such debts. However, before that happens, you should do everything in your power to get your debt under control, so the court will see you actively attempted to pay it off on your own. You may want to consider performing the following actions prior to bankruptcy to see if they will help you.
Call to get your interest rate reduced
Many people do not realize that if they simply called their credit card company, they could probably get some leeway. Many companies have no problem reducing the interest rate for people who have trouble paying. You should not expect a major reduction with this instance. For example, if your current interest rate is at 20%, then it likely will not go down to 3%. However, even if it only goes down a little bit, it still helps.
Pay off high interest cards first
Many people have credit card debt spread across several different cards. A good strategy is to pay off the card with the higher interest rate. If you delay paying off this card, then the interest rate will only grow larger over time, forcing you to pay off a higher amount. Once you pay off that card, you can turn your attention toward cards with lower rates.
Stash your credit cards for the time being
If you continue to purchase items on your credit cards, then you will just have more interest to pay off. You should stick with a debit card or cash until you pay off the debt. Only after exhausting all options should you look into bankruptcy.