On Monday, The Hill published a piece detailing how many Americans are facing a tough financial situation, with many struggling to make payments on their credit cards or other debts.
“It’s been a rough year for consumers,” the piece read.
“They’ve had to work harder to make ends meet, which means they’re less likely to be able to buy what they need and that can hurt their ability to pay back their debt.”
While this may seem like a common story, many Americans may not realize that they’re struggling with credit cards, and that debt may actually be a worse problem than many realize.
“We’re seeing more and more people struggling with their credit card balances and debt,” said Michelle Givens, senior vice president of consumer insights at Experian.
“Credit card balances can balloon to a lot of debt that’s not necessarily in your control.
This is especially true when you’re living paycheck to paycheck, which many people are.”
While there are many factors that could cause a credit card balance to balloon, a big part of the problem is the fact that Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck, which can lead to a higher credit card interest rate.
“When a credit score is bad, it means that you can’t make payments, and it’s even more of a concern if you have debt,” Givins said.
“If you’re spending more than you earn, the interest on your debt will increase.
That means it’s less likely that you’ll have the money to pay your bills, and if you’re over the cap on your credit cards interest rate, you’re going to have to take out a larger loan to pay for your debts.””
If you have a bad credit score, you can end up with a credit report that can be extremely difficult to manage, and you’re more likely to miss payments on your loan, which could put you in default on your mortgage or other debt,” she added.
Givens said that the average interest rate on credit cards is between 1.6 percent and 2.8 percent, with the average credit card being more than 30 years old.
While credit card companies can offer you a credit monitoring program, that can only provide so much for your credit score.
In order to get a good credit score and help you avoid a credit check, Givans said it’s important to pay attention to the fact you’re not a good debtor.
“It’s important not to be a bad debtor,” Gives said.
What can you do to protect yourself from a bad score?
Givs says that the first thing you need to do is make sure you pay off the balance on your card.
You can do this by making the following payments:A payment on time to your credit provider, such as your credit union or bankIt’s always a good idea to pay all of your bills on time.
“Payment on time is a good thing, but there’s nothing worse than a bad debt, and when it comes to paying off a bad debts, it’s often a bad situation,” Given said.
If you owe money to a company or credit card company, then you need a way to stop paying that debt.
The best way to protect your credit is to keep track of what you owe and avoid the mistakes that can lead you to default.
Gives said that you should be able just like any other consumer to make the payments on time, but it’s more important that you keep your payments on track and pay the bills on the same day, if possible.
“You should never default,” Givids said.
“The other thing that’s really important is to not be afraid to make your payments.
When you get paid on time it doesn’t mean you’re in the clear, and there’s a good chance that your balance will balloon,” GIVs added.
If you’ve got bad credit, don’t panic.
If you’re stuck, Gives recommends keeping a log of the balance and how much you owe.
“Keep a record of any payments you make on your account and any balance that gets taken out or not paid.
Keep this log and your phone number and the other details of the account, and then you can see if there’s any other issues with the account,” she said.GIVs said that this could also be useful if you’ve had problems with a company, but the more important thing is to pay the debt as quickly as possible.
The more you pay down the debt, the less likely you’ll default, and the sooner you’ll be able get paid off.
“Once you pay all the debt on time and make sure that you’re making the payments as fast as possible, then it will be easier to make good on your obligation,” Goulds said, adding that “when it comes time to pay on time you should have a credit monitor on hand that you will use to help you manage your debts and keep your credit rating