Getting Out of Debt: How to Pay Off Credit Cards Faster

Credit counseling services state in their advertising that it will take decades to pay off your credit cards unless you sign-up for their service



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But the truth is, you can develop a plan to pay off your cards as fast as possible without signing up for credit counseling.

Credit cards love for you to carry a big balance and pay just the minimum required each month. They set the minimum at just 2% of your balance, and if you do pay just the minimum each month, you will likely be paying that card off for a very long time -- decades if you have a substantial balance. Credit card companies want you to do this because you are a "cash cow" to them.
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But if you pay just $10 more than the minimum required each month, you can reduce your pay off time substantially. For example, the average credit card with a $1,000 balance will require 16 years to pay off if the holder pays only the minimum (2%) required each month. But if he pays $10 more than the minimum, he can pay the card off in four years and save a fortune in interest. Imagine how fast you can pay off the card if you pay $20 or $30 more than the minimum each month?
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So even if you are swimming in credit card debt and see no way out, don't despair just yet. It's easy to find the money -- just give up the things you don't really need and apply them to your credit card debt. Examples:
--That cup of coffee you have five mornings a week that costs $2.00. If you stopped buying it you could save $40 a month that could be used to pay your credit card down.
--That trip to the vending machine everyday at work. It costs you anywhere from $20 to $60 a month. Give up the candy bars and soda, lose weight, save money and get rid of your credit card debt faster.
--All those long distance phone calls! Why not send an e-mail instead?
--Why not call your credit card issuer and ask for a lower rate? Details.

There are many ways to lower monthly expenses to free up more income to pay down debt. Click here for tips on saving money.
Just how long will it take you to pay down your card? Below is a table that illustrates the monthly payment required to pay off a balance in one or two years with a 9.9% rate card. _______________________________________________________________________________
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