Many adults don't ever take the time to sit down and review their bills. When you do, you might realize that you are in more debt than you originally thought. The issue with many forms of credit is that people can get stuck paying for only the minimum payments. On accounts that are accruing interest, you might not notice much headway in the balance reduction if you are only paying for the bare minimum each month.
If you have taken a hard look at your finances and realize that your current plan isn't going to get you out of debt, it is time to do something about it. Some people try to get those debts paid off faster by paying more on them. This is a good idea for some, but only if they have a good plan and the capability to follow that plan.
Getting debts paid off faster
You may be able to pay off your debts faster by adding extra money to your monthly payments. Many people use the "snowball method." You start by paying as much as possible on the smallest debt you have. You still keep up with other minimum payments.
Once you have that account paid in full, you move the money you would normally spend on it to the next smallest debt. You continue doing this until they are all paid off. Throughout the process, you try to only pay cash for items so that you aren't incurring new charges.
Action when your debts are more than you can handle
If your debts are higher than you can handle, bankruptcy might be the only way that you can find the financial relief you need. Your first step is to find out which form of bankruptcy you qualify for.
A Chapter 7 bankruptcy will liquidate your assets to pay off your debts. You won't owe any payments on those debts once this is done.
A Chapter 13 bankruptcy enables you to keep more of your assets, but you will have to make regular payments to a bankruptcy trustee who will distribute them to your creditors. Once your payment plan is completed, any remaining balances will be forgiven.
Bankruptcy can have significant impacts on your credit but so can having a bunch of late payments. Consider your options before you decide what you are going to do to reclaim your financial future.