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Pay bills on time
When you miss payments your credit score will suffer. You’ll accumulate even more debt because your creditors will penalize you by increasing your interest rates and you’ll accumulate even more debt.
Shop carefully for your loan
Check several lenders and then choose the one with the lowest interest rate or the best terms.
Be aware of all fees
Check out fees that will apply to your loan or credit card. You may be charged upfront fees, late fees or fees for early repayments. Credit cards may charge additional fees for certain transactions so it’s important to know each company’s fee structure.
Act responsibly with revolving credit
Revolving credit is an open-ended credit and is similar to a basic credit card. Credit cards can cause you to overspend because they allow you to pay for anything you want. Over time, your debt accumulates because it’s hard to keep track of your spending. You should be aware of the high-interest rate that most lenders charge on these cards.
Respond promptly to phone calls from creditors
If you find that you cannot afford to pay a lender on time, call the company and explain your financial situation. The lender will listen to you and may agree to lower your interest rate or eliminate some of the fees you’ve been charged.
Review credit reports
Check your credit report for errors and if you find any, make sure they are corrected. Once you have started to pay off a loan, ensure that your lender is decreasing your balance.
Be smart about debt consolidation programs
Most people who are carrying credit card balances are turning to various debt relief options. With debt consolidation, monthly payments are reduced so it’s easier to pay off the loan. However, debt consolidation could be a pitfall especially if you do not watch how you use your credit cards.
Use a loan amortization calculator to plan your payments
A loan amortization calculator can be used to calculate your monthly payments as well as accumulated interest. One of these calculators will show how much interest you will pay over the years and how much of your balance will be paid off at any given time.
Look further than just the APR to choose the best loan
Do not compare loans just by their APRs. This is because various lenders have different ways of calculating their APRs.
Do not borrow money to take a vacation
If you want to take a vacation, start saving early. Taking out a loan to pay for a vacation can have adverse effects on your finances. You will spend two weeks or so dining under the moonlight but it may take years to pay off the loan. Borrowing money to take a vacation should not be a priority.