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Credit card debt stinks!

January 24th, 2014 at 05:41 pm

I have spent the last two days working on a budget. I am very happy with the results. Today I reviewed my credit card statement because the billing cycle ended yesterday. We have only one credit card and it has a huge balance. I currently have a 13% interest rate. I called the company and asked for a lower interest rate and was told no. Oh well, I am going to tackle this debt and get it paid for as soon as possible because I paid $102 and change in interest. Holy Smokes! I am beginning this billing cycle with a balance of $8583. I paid the minimum payment today of $188. I plan to make another payment on Thursday with the remaining money from my check. I have scheduled automatic payments of $180 each Friday beginning Jan.31 until the last Friday in May. I hope to make additional payments and have the card down to $4000 by the start of June.

Up next, the grocery budget. Oh boy, mine is out of control. Anyone have any secrets to share?
Have a great night everyone!

9 Responses to “Credit card debt stinks!”

  1. Buendia Says:

    Credit card debt does stink! But it sounds like you're working hard on it! That's awesome!

    Groceries is my big expense... I try to keep it under control by meal planning. I make sure I have several inexpensive meals (usually vegetarian which is cheaper) in the plan. So tonight it was polenta and a salad. It fed three of us for about $3. Another one is scrambled eggs with homemade tortilla strips, green onions and salsa mixed in. Also inexpensive: baked potatoes and broccoli with cheese. I have a chicken night and a fish night, so those are more expensive.

    We don't really buy cereal (cereal is outrageously expensive in my opinion) and my husband buys beer only rarely (I don't drink - I'd rather spend my money on dessert!). I only buy fruit in season or on-sale. We buy one orange juice for the week and cut it with water. There are probably a lot of other things I don't buy, but I can't think of them because I don't buy them!

    We make a lot from scratch - all of our cookies, cakes, salad dressing. I don't buy prepared foods.

    I make a big batch of something in the crockpot and freeze it in dinner portions (and whatever is left over in a lunch portion to take to work).

    Anyway, those are some of my strategies... Good luck!!

  2. PauletteGoddard Says:

    Hey, I used to have cc debt at $12000. I paid it off, it took a few years for me, but oh, the leaps I leaped. Getting your slippers ready for your grand jete: your budget legs will be in great shape for your happy dance.

  3. Petunia 100 Says:

    Do you have a good credit score? If so, shop around for a 0% balance transfer offer. Paying no interest really helps when you are trying to eliminate debt.


  4. baselle Says:

    Welcome! I agree that credit card debt stinks. I had about 10K in cc debt when I started.

    The biggest secrets I have with groceries is: 1.know your unit prices and keep an open mind where you can get the best prices. For example, I've been known to get brand-name tuna at the drugstore if it was cheaper and 2. eliminate waste. Its one thing to buy it and eat it and another thing completely to buy it and have to toss it because you lost track of it. Check to see what you are throwing away unused and either buy less of it or develop an exit strategy for it.

  5. Riverbendgirl Says:

    Thanks so much. My mother is coming over today with her grocery ads and we are going to try to meal plan. I will let you know how it all goes. I am so encouraged my your success at paying down debt! We do have a great credit score and have have never thought about opening another one. I will check into that, Thanks so much for all the tips!

  6. scfr Says:

    Regarding groceries, it depends on each individual's spending habits as to where it is easiest to cut back. You've already gotten some great tips. One thing I had to learn was to minimize the number of ingredients. Back in the day, I suffered from the "I should be more like Martha Stewart syndrome" and had lots of specialized ingredients (especially spices) for fancy recipes. What happened was I would use the spice a couple times and then it would sit in the pantry until it went stale and got tossed which was a big waste of money and resources. Now olive oil, salt, pepper, and a no-salt seasoning blend are my go to ingredients for flavoring. Most veggies, for example, that aren't eaten raw can be either steamed, oven roasted, or stir fried in a wok or big skillet. For oven roasting or stir frying all you need is oil, salt & pepper. When I make something like a soup, I add up all of the spices that the recipe calls for and substitute the equivalent amount of my no-salt seasoning mix.

  7. baselle Says:

    to build on scfr's comment: I felt my cooking improved when I added only (or up to) 3 different herbs/spices. I had the Martha Stewart bug and would cook with 5,6,7 spices/dish. I discovered that I didn't taste them all and if I only tasted 3, why add the other 4? I now pick three and add meaningful amounts of them.

  8. creditcardfree Says:

    If you have a non Chase card, you probably could transfer a portion to the Chase Slate card. Last I saw it was no balance transfer fee if transferred in the first two months...also 0% interest for 15 months on the balance transfers. Go to the Chase site to find the card. If you do have a Chase credit card, you will not be able to transfer the balance to this card.

  9. EllaSea Says:

    There is a cookbook put out by Barnes and Noble called 4 Ingredient Cooking that is great. Easy recipes and only 4 ingredients each, so the meals are cost-friendly (usually. If they call for expensive meats, I just sub in chicken). My other suggestions would be to go to the Dollar Store for things that you know will be more expensive at the grocery store - spices, baking supplies, olive oil, even things like shredded cheese. Some take EBT Cards (Food stamps) and some even take coupons. Just be careful you are really getting a deal. Some things, like pasta are a buck a the Dollar Store, but only $.79 at the grocery store.

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