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Have you Over Indulged At Christmas?

December 20, 2016

December 20, 2016

No, I’m not talking about eating too much food or celebrating too hard, I’m talking about financial over-indulgence. Christmas advertising sees us inundated with things to buy for our loved ones.  There’s toys and games for the kids, perfume & lingerie for the ladies, or hardware toys for the boys.

 It is easy to be influenced and caught up in the Christmas spirit of giving, until your credit card arrives in January ….

 And like many Australians you may have more than one credit card, and you may not pay off the balance at the end of each month.  It sometimes feels overwhelming as if you only pay the minimum you don’t get anywhere.  Each month the interest charge is equal or more than what you’ve managed to pay off during the month.

 So, what can you do.  Here are a few tips to help you pay off your credit card(s).

  1. Balance Transfer cards. These cards allow you transfer your balance from one credit card to another one and the new one charges no interest, or very low interest, for a set period of time. BUT you must never ever ever use this new card to transact, otherwise the interest free period ceases and you will be back to square one.

    TIP – once you receive your new balance transfer credit card immediately cut it up and throw it away so you are not tempted to use it.

  2. Pay Off Smallest First

    If you have two or more credit cards you often receive advice to concentrate on paying off the largest balance first as it is this one that is costing you more in interest.

    However, it can be disheartening when you see only a small improvement in the balance each month.

    Why not choose the smallest balance, throw as much surplus money as you can towards it, and see the balance reduce significantly each month.  It makes it easier to stick to your plan if you see a result.  Once you have paid this one off, cut it up and throw it away and move on to the next lowest balance

  3. Consolidate your debts - by refinancing your mortgage and consolidating your credit card debt into your home loan you can be free up your cash-flow (by eliminating your monthly credit card repayments) and repay the debt at a lower interest rate. To enquire about refinancing call us today on (03) 9781 4533

 So if you have over-indulged at Christmas time, don’t panic, but put in place a strategy to get your finances back into shape as early as possible in 2017.

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Michelle Roberts

Advisor

  • Bachelor of Business (Property Investment)
  • Advanced Diploma of Financial Services (Financial Planning)

Michelle Roberts is an Authorised Representative of Australian Unity Personal Financial Services Limited (AUFP) ABN 26 098 725 145, AFSL 234459. This is general advice only and does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this advice you should consider the appropriateness of the advice in light of your own circumstances. Past performance in not indicative of future performance.