Getting Credit Card Debt Under Control
Debt is a major stressor for couples in the U.S. – with total consumer debt (all types) reaching $14.35 trillion in November of 2020*. Of that total, approximately $807 billion was credit card debt.
Jamie Fatheree is a Certified Financial Counselor for the American Airlines Federal Credit Union’s Financial Wellness Department. If you’re seeing increases in your debt, she advises taking action early. Here are three steps to get credit card debt under control.
- Create a spending plan. It’s important to know how much you can afford to pay toward credit card debt. Knowing where we spend is the first step to controlling how much we spend. You can read more about creating a spending plan here.
- Break the credit card habit. Take them out of your wallet and remove numbers from apps. Use your spending plan to prioritize your expenses and bills so they can all be covered with cash or your debit card.
- Focus on paying one card at a time. Make minimum payments to all cards except the one you’re focused on paying off. “Any extra money in your spending plan should go to that card,” Fatheree says. “When it’s paid off, roll that payment over to the next debt.”
You can also find additional no-cost resources on the Credit Union’s online web portal, the Navigator at Navigator.AACreditUnion.org.
Credit card debt is not always avoidable, and if you feel stuck, you’re not alone. If you need help, financial counselors are available for a confidential, no-cost, consultation. For an appointment, call 833-FIN-WELL (833-346-3955) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Bankrate.com, Sept. 27, 2021