Budgets are tough when you’re first on your own. Credit cards, banks, and pay day loan companies might seem helpful, but these companies make money through interest and other fees. You can manage debt!
How to avoid debt
Debt can be stressful, so try to:
- Prioritize your bills and payments (needs vs wants)
- Pay debts off as quickly as possible to avoid more debt!
- Make a budget and stick to it, with an emergency fund
- Track your expenses, and your balances
- Talk with your creditors and negotiate
- Avoid pay day lenders – they have the highest fees!
How to deal with debt
There are lots of services to help you plan out how you will move forward from debt. When you’re ready, here is a good plan to start with:
Lots of programs can help you create a plan to be debt-free. A good plan could start by:
- Don’t add credit – put away the credit card
- Collect and record your debt info
- Try to pay more than the minimum each month
- Rework your budget
- Talk to the financial institution about a payment plan
- Make a debt repayment plan (Credit counselling society of BC)
- Stick to your plan
I need some help. Where can I go?
The Credit Counselling Society of BC is a non-profit organization that helps people get out of debt. When you are ready, give them a call and they will set you up with a credit counsellor who can help you break down your budget and come up with a plan to pay off your debt.
The credit counsellor can also speak to your creditors on your behalf and negotiate a new plan for you to become debt free. This might make more sense for your needs than the bills and amounts sent to you in the mail.
- Free credit Counselors can help you look over your budget, habits, goals, and debt, in person or over the phone. The credit counsellor can speak to your creditors on your behalf and negotiate a new plan. They can help you make a debt repayment plan that is manageable. Contact Credit Counselling Society of BC or call 1-888-527-8999. It’s free!
- Consumer Proposals are created with a credit counselling service. You can start to pay a percentage of your debt to each creditor over time, instead of the whole amount at once.
- Bankruptcy is a way to remove yourself from most of your debt, but can be costly and has long-term consequences.