Due to some extenuating circumstances, the last couple of years have been tough financially for our family (job loss, etc). We have accumulated a great deal of credit card debt. We’ve already done the balance transfer thing but couldn’t pay off the amount before the 0% expired.
My DH just got a new job with a great salary and I just got a raise. So our ability to pay off the debt is much better now. However, because of our total balances and debt utilization our credit scores are crap. We have a good deal of equity in our home, but not sure if we can use that with our scores.
Is there a reputable online financial advisor that could help us sort through all of this and come up with a plan? (We’d rather not use someone local to us because we live in a small town and don’t want to be airing our financial picture with someone who knows us.)
You likely don’t need help. A good place to start would be with Dave Ramsey’s Baby Steps. You can look it up and research it for free. He’s not for everyone but I think he would be good for you.
Consider one of the non-profit credit counseling companies associated with the National Foundation for Credit Counseling. They have pre negotiated low interest rate credit card repayment rates with credit card companies. My understanding is that they have a onetime fee of perhaps less than $50.
Well, I think several of us can give you ideas. Its not rocket science…its just math.
- Amount of money each month you can apply toward debts
- List all your credit card balances and interest rates
Given your circumstances, I would not recommend opening a HELOC and putting your house at risk. I would also stop using your credit cards and implement cash budget asap.