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8 tips to reduce your credit card debt

05 January 2015

8 tips to reduce your credit card debt

New Year. A time for resolutions, fresh starts…and scary credit card bills.

If you're like many Aussies who've spent up big over Christmas, you may be looking for a bit of financial breathing space. So here are some handy tips to help you get on top of your credit card debt in 2015.

1. Think about switching to another card using a balance transfer

Consider moving to a card that has a lower rate of interest (or 0%p.a. interest) on balance transfers. This will help save you money on interest charges, and make your payments easier to manage. It's important to remember that special balance transfer rates are usually for a set time period, so to get the most benefit you should pay off your balance before the period ends.

2. Pay more than the minimum payments

Pay off as much as you can each month. Paying more than the minimum payment will help you save on interest and pay off your balance more quickly.

Consider reducing your credit limit

By reducing your limit you can reduce the risk of running up debt that you're unable to repay.

4. Resist the temptation

If you want to clear your debt, well…you need to stop adding to it. Resist the temptation to spend more by leaving your card at home.

5. Try not to use your card to withdraw cash

Interest is usually charged immediately and can be higher than the interest rate for normal purchases. There is also a cash advance fee to watch out for.

6. If you're really strapped, make two minimum payments each month

Interest is typically charged on a daily basis, so the sooner you make a payment the faster your average daily balance is reduced, which means you'll pay less interest.

7. Don't miss repayments

Missing repayments or paying later than the due date will likely result in you being charged late payment fees. To help prevent late fees, you could set up a monthly direct debit for the minimum repayment amount (or more if you can afford it).

8. See what you can sell to help lower your debt

If you've recently bought some big ticket items, like a car, think seriously about your ability to keep these - especially if you're paying them off. By selling one or two of your big-budget items you can help to reduce your debt.

To find out how CUA can help with competitive credit card interest rates and balance transfer options, learn more about our credit cards online, drop in to your local branch, or call 133 282.

Please note: This is only intended as a general guide in relation to issues you may want to consider when attempting to reduce your credit card debt. It is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all relevant issues and you should take into account your own particular circumstances, and obtain independent expert advice where needed, before proceeding.

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