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Consider all the options you have to pay off debt

Feeling like you just can't keep up with the bills isn't a pleasant experience. You might decide one day that you need to do something about the overwhelming debt you are in. This is when you will have to make a decision.

When this happens, you have a few options. You can continue to struggle to make only the minimum payments. You can make a plan to try to pay off some of the debts to ease your burden. You can file for bankruptcy.

Keep struggling to make the payments

If you decide to keep trying to make only the minimum payments on the debts you have, you will likely find that your balances aren't going down. This is because interest can kick the totals right back up even after you make your payment on time.

Choosing this option is likely the easiest because it means you don't have to actually do anything right away. You might miss payments every now and then or you may continue to plod along and barely make it. Ultimately, this might not be the best plan for a long-term solution to financial freedom.

Make a plan to pay down debts

It might take a little more work than just continuing on the present course, but you can make a plan to pay off the debts you owe. In this case, you need to write down all the debts you have with the due dates, minimum payments and balance. You would make a plan to pay off at least the minimum payment on each one. You must determine what extra money you have to put on the bills.

This might mean you need to cut back on some of the non-essential activities you do so that you can put that money toward debts. Put that extra toward the bill with the lowest balance so you can pay it off faster. Once you pay a bill off, you take the money you spent on that one and put it toward the next lowest bill on your list. Continue doing this until you've paid all the debts off or until you have monthly payments that are more manageable.

File for bankruptcy

There are some instances in which you simply can't afford the debts that you are facing. If you come to this realization, you can file for bankruptcy. There are specific criteria to meet to file. In fact, Chapter 7 and Chapter 13, which are the two common personal bankruptcies, each have different criteria and other points for you to consider before you file.

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