According to the Wall Street Journal, Americans are borrowing at higher levels than previously reported. Whether it’s a loan or a credit card purchase, borrowing is at higher levels than previously seen. With the holiday season in full swing, are you guilty of charging or borrowing too much?

What Can You Do?

If you have last minute gifts to get or need a plan for next year, we have some helpful tips for you.

  1. Make a holiday budget – this is essential for keeping you accountable to what your finances will allow.
  2. Plan Ahead – just like Santa, make a list and check it twice. This will give you a good idea of how many gifts you would like to give and how much your budget will allow you to spend for each person.
  3. Use sales/deals – keeping an eye out for budget-friendly deals all year will help you cross off gifts for your loved ones in manageable chunks.
  4. Use Your Rewards – many credit cards offer rewards or cash back deals at specific stores, consider using these to knock down the price for something you were interested in buying. You may also be able to take the cash back and apply it to an existing balance.
  5. Make Something – the holiday season is about spending time with the ones you love. Use your crafting skills to make something from the heart. You will find that these gifts often mean more than something purchased from a store.
  6. Talk to Your Family – if you are worried about your spending, speak with your family about different options. Chances are that your family members are also concerned about how much to spend during the holiday season. You could propose ideas like setting a gift spending cap or pulling names for a Secret Santa.

Need Debt Help Now?

Making minimum payments will not get you out of debt quickly. So, what can you do to deal with your post-holiday debt?

  • Do Nothing: While you can do nothing, it is important to keep in mind that your debt will continue to grow. Eventually, this will likely lead to lawsuits and judgments against you.
  • Negotiate: Many creditors will work with you to come up with a better repayment plan or even take a lump sum payoff. If you decide to hire a professional to help you with this process, please do your research. Keep in mind that some creditors will not work with debt consolidation companies. Another thing to consider is that there are tax ramifications of settling your debts. Whatever debt your creditors do forgive can be considered taxable income to you. So, if you’re struggling to pay your taxes now, settling with your creditors might make that problem worse.
  • Borrow Money: Be VERY careful with this option. This may be precisely the reason you are struggling with debt to begin with, so we do not recommend this step for everyone. Some people can borrow money to pay off debt. If you can do so, you may be able to create a manageable repayment plan or pay off the debt entirely in a lump sum. Do your research and take your time before agreeing to anything. The last thing you want to do is create a bigger problem for yourself!
  • Bankruptcy: Bankruptcy can be your best bet to get out from overwhelming debt. Bankruptcy is a viable option to reduce or eliminate your debt entirely!

Looking For More Information?

At the Law Office of Daniela Romero, we believe in relationships that are based on trust. Before we work together, we would like to get to know you and we would like you to get to know us. We want you to be sure you are the right fit for us and that we are the perfect fit for you. This will allow you to be completely comfortable sharing intimate and difficult details of your case, so we can offer you representation to the fullest extent of the law. Call us today to set up a free consultation.