How to negotiate credit card debt?
When you have a high credit card balance, it can seem like your options are limited. You might be nervous about making even the smallest payment, let alone making a large one. But if you take the time to research your options and plan ahead, negotiating credit card debt is possible for almost anyone. If you’re struggling to pay back all of the money that you owe on your credit cards, then you may be worried about how to negotiate credit card debt. However, before you give up hope and settle for a miserable life paying high interest rates and minimum payments every month, take a step back and consider your options carefully. Negotiating credit card debt is not impossible; in fact, there are many different ways that you can reduce the amount that you owe and free up more money to put towards other expenses instead.
Know your options before you negotiate
Before you even think about negotiating credit card debt, you’ll need to know exactly how much debt you owe, how much interest you’re currently paying on it, and how much money you make each month. Credit card companies will not want to negotiate with you if you don’t have this information down pat. Without it, you’ll be at a disadvantage when talking to your creditors, and it will be difficult to know what realistic options are available to you. Your next step is to figure out exactly how much you can afford to pay each month. Even if you are able to negotiate a lower interest rate or get your creditors to agree to a payment plan that stretches out your debt repayment period, you’ll have to be able to afford the higher monthly payments that you’ll be required to pay on your credit cards.
Negotiate a lower interest rate
If you have a high credit card debt and a low credit score, you may be able to negotiate a lower interest rate on your cards. If you are currently paying a high interest rate on one or more of your credit cards, it’s worth calling your creditors and asking them if they will lower it. Many creditors have automated systems that immediately decline any request for a lowered interest rate, but many others will actually put this request through to a live representative. You can increase your chances of success by having your financial situation and reasons for wanting a lower interest rate clearly outlined before you call. Bear in mind that even if your creditors agree to a lower interest rate, you will still have to make the payments on your current balance, and that may be more than you can afford each month.
Try debt consolidation
If you have multiple debts to repay, debt consolidation may be a good option for you. With this approach, you would get a new loan that is equal to the combined value of all of your credit card debts, and then make one single payment each month to repay this new loan. Many people who choose to do this end up paying less in the long run because their interest rates are often lower than what they were paying on their old credit cards. The main drawback is that you may have a harder time getting approved for new credit in the future if you have this new loan on your credit report. If you decide that debt consolidation is the best option for you, make sure that you do your research first. You’ll want to make sure that the company that you choose is legitimate, and find out what interest rate they’re offering on their loan.
Try a credit line
Credit lines have become increasingly popular as they are options to pay less interest and free up your credit card space. If you're not sure where to start, Gauss is a good product to explore. Pay off any credit card balance using your low interest credit line from Gauss, both on-demand and automatically. Your cards get lower APR, and you pay off balances much faster. Keep using your current cards and watch your savings go up. No fees!
With this in mind, let's take a look at some more specific strategies.
Ask for a deferment or suspension - If you can’t afford to make a payment right away, you may be able to negotiate with your creditors for a deferment or suspension on your credit card debt payments. This is a good idea if you’re in the process of applying for a new job or getting retrained for a new career, have a serious illness in the family that requires time off work, or have just gone through a divorce. Ask for a partial refund of the fees you’ve paid - If you’ve been making minimum payments on your card each month but you’ve been paying for services like credit protection, debt management, or account monitoring, you may be able to get a refund on these fees. If you’ve been making minimum payments but you’ve been paying very little on the actual balance, you may be able to negotiate a lower monthly payment with your creditors. Get more time to pay and pay only the interest - If you’re struggling to make payments but don’t qualify for a deferment or a reduced payment amount, you can try to negotiate a long payment plan to give yourself more time to pay off your debt. Some creditors are willing to let you make payments over a period of two or three years.
The bottom line
Negotiating credit card debt isn’t easy, and it can be a scary process. However, with some careful planning and a positive attitude, you can make it work. Credit card debt is a serious issue for many people, but it doesn’t have to be an impossible task to overcome. Credit card debt can be challenging to manage even for the most financially savvy people, which is why it’s so important to know your rights as a consumer and your options for dealing with debt.