Cure For Holiday Debt Hangover

Cathy Jacobson, Branch Manager, Consumer Credit Counseling Services
Cathy Jacobson, Branch Manager, Consumer Credit Counseling Services

If you are suffering from a holiday credit card debt hangover, you are not alone. Local debt counselors tell us Amarillo consumers have thousands of dollars more in debt from holiday spending.

After all the holiday shopping....cut those credit cards up. One debt counselor says the average Amarillo household carries 4 to 8 thousand dollars in debt from holiday spending. To get on track, Cathy Jacobson Branch Manager at Consumer Credit Counseling Services says you need to start with a financial inventory.

"You're going to take your take home pay per month, what inventory means is a list of all your debt what you owe, the monthly payment and the due date."

Then Jacobson recommends making budget cuts and consider taking on a second job. She says another option is consolidating debt.

"Tthe consolidation loan is a good way to maintain your good credit if you have good credit because they pay off all of your credit card debt and then you just make a monthly installment payment to them."

Another option Jacobson says can be a good move is transferring credit card balances to one low interest bearing credit card.

"It is a good thing if you read the fine print. A lot of times we see clients that did not read the fine print and they've transferred something over not knowing that the interest  rate was going to at this time frame."

Jacobson says you want to try and pay off you lowest debt balances first.  Once debt is paid off , Jacobson says only keep one major credit for emergencies.