5 sure-fire ways to dump debt fast
Tuesday 07 April 2020
Up to your ears in debt? Or maybe you’ve just got one lingering debt that’s been following you around like a bad smell? No matter the size of it, at the end of the day, debt is debt and it needs to be paid off otherwise it’ll haunt you for years to come.
Think of all the things you could do if you were debt-free and didn’t have to spend your money on fees and interest charges? Don’t let debt hold you back for a second longer! Here are five sure-fire ways to dump debt fast:
1. Merge your debts with a debt consolidation loan
If you have multiple debts, one way to pay them off faster is by merging them together into the one debt consolidation loan. By consolidating your debts you’ll save on interest costs as you’ll only have one interest rate to pay for as opposed to one rate per individual debt.
By the same token, doing this means that you’ll only have one regular repayment to worry about for the lot, instead of juggling multiple repayments with different due dates, making it easier to manage. It’s basically like killing two birds (or more, depending on how many debts you have) with one stone!
You can potentially wrap your personal loans and credit cards into the one debt consolidation loan with a lower rate.
Say you have a $20,000 car loan with a 9% interest rate over a 3-year term with a total of $2,896 interest paid over the life of the loan, thus, your monthly repayments would be $636.
On top of this, you also have a $5,000 credit card balance to pay off over three years at a 22% interest rate, which, using Mozo’s Credit Card Debt Payments Calculator, we found would equate to a total interest of $1,859, meaning your monthly repayments would be $192.
Doing the maths, you’ll see that your $25,000 debt would wind up costing you $29,755 as your total interest cost would cost $4,755 and your regular monthly repayments would be $828.
However, if you were to consolidate these debts into a debt consolidation loan with an 8% interest rate paid over three years, then you’d pay $3,203 interest in total, so your monthly repayments would drop to $783.
By going with the debt consolidation loan you could potentially save $1,552 in interest costs!
2. Reduce your credit card interest with a balance transfer
Say you’ve built up a big credit card balance, you might consider moving the balance over to a balance transfer card, so you can pay it off at a lower or even 0% interest rate.
Without the added cost of high-interest charges, you could potentially pay your balance off faster - just try to pay it off before the balance transfer period ends, so you don’t cop a high revert rate.
3. Kick the high-interest credit card to the curb
On the topic of credit card debt, if you’re currently faced with high-interest charges, then kick that high-interest credit card to the curb!
If you’re struggling to pay off debt then don’t create more even debt by racking up high-interest charges on your credit card - that’s just counter-intuitive.
If you want to get on top of your debt once and for all, then either switch to a low-rate credit card instead or swear off the plastic for a while.
4. Make extra repayments to pay off your loan faster
If you have a mortgage, car loan or any other type of loan for that matter, and if your loan allows it, making extra repayments could be a great way to pay off your loan faster and move one step closer to becoming debt-free.
You might think that making a few extra repayments won’t make much of a difference, but a little could go a long way.
Using Mozo’s personal loan repayments calculator we found that if you took out a $20,000 unsecured personal loan at the current 11.12% p.a. average variable rate (at time of writing) and paid it back over five years, then your monthly repayments would be $436 and you’d pay $6,163 total interest.
However, by increasing your monthly repayments from $436 to $518 (just $82 more) then you could pay the loan off in just four years instead of five and only pay $4,868 total interest.
That’s a whole year shaved off your loan term, plus, you’d be saving a whopping $1,295 in interest!
5. Tighten the reins on your budget
Make some time to sit down and go through your budget with a fine-tooth comb, so you can catch any money drainers and spot some potential money savers! Take a close look at all your bills and other regular expenses, then do your research to see where you save a little extra money.
You could save some serious cash by switching to a better deal on your home loan, phone bill or even just by switching your takeaway coffee for one made at home.
The extra cash you save by making a few small switches could go a long way towards paying off your debt.