title:Are You Having Difficulty Meeting Your Financial Obligations? author:Jeff Dragt source_url:http://www.articlecity.com/articles/business_and_finance/article_3599.shtml date_saved:2007-07-25 12:30:07 category:business_and_finance article:

Many individuals are experiencing difficulties meeting their financial obligations from month to month and the monthly payments are overwhelming and creating unnecessary stress and frustration. However, it is imperative that you find a way to meet your monthly obligations in order to maintain a positive credit rating and eliminate problems with credit collectors and losing your good credit standing. Of course, when you find yourself in this situation you have several options from managing your debt yourself to debt consolidation loans or debt consolidation services. However, before you take the route of applying for a loan or debt consolidation help there are a few things you should do.
First and foremost you need to sit down with your bills, your monthly income, and a calculator. Run the numbers and see how much money you have coming in and how much money is going out. If your bills outweigh your income then you may need outside help. However, you are most likely in the same boat as most and have enough income to meet your obligations but are spending money in places you don?t realize which causes financial hardship. For example, if you earn $2500 per month after taxes and your rent or mortgage is $800, your car $350, power $120, credit cards $200, groceries $300 and gasoline $200 then you are spending $1970 each month. Of course, you may have other expenses that need to be included like childcare, cable TV and Internet, and the like or you may have less expenses. The point is to sit down and evaluate exactly how much money you have coming in and going out and to pinpoint exactly where money is being spent.
If you buy a flavored coffee every day on your way to work then you are basically spending an extra $100 per month on coffee that could easily be redirected to your monthly bills. Or, perhaps you like to eat out for every meal. Stop this and you will save significantly as well. Always make a list of things you need when you go to the grocery store and clip coupons. This will likely save you $50-$100 per month as well. Another tip is to save on electricity bills by keeping the thermostat at a conservative temperature. If it is too hot then open some windows, if it is too cold then put an extra comforter on the bed.
As far as gas expenditures go you can always car pool and save a lot of money by doing this. If your mortgage/rent or car payment is too expensive and you can?t seem to make the payments then consider refinancing, or downgrading to a smaller home or less expensive car. All of these options will help you save a significant amount of money in a hurry as well as help you eliminate your debt by meeting your monthly obligations. However, if you find yourself with your monthly bills significantly outweighing your monthly income then there are options. You may consider a consolidation loan or else you might prefer to use the services of debt consolidation services or credit counselors.
A debt consolidation loan will help you because you can receive the loan and immediately pay off all of your monthly obligations. Of course, you will still have to make a monthly payment for the debt consolidation loan although it should be considerably lower than the sum of all of the other debts you were paying. The major benefit of this option is you decrease your stress and anxiety of feeling gobbled up by debt by taking care of all of your obligations and leaving only one monthly payment. However, the drawbacks are that you must have good credit to qualify for one of these loans; you may risk losing your home if you cannot pay your monthly mortgage, and you may become overextended again because you have a false sense of security that your debt is taken care of. Before choosing this option be sure you are fully educated on the benefits and drawbacks and any risks you may experience because of it.
Another option available to you when you cannot meet your monthly obligations includes using debt consolidation services or else credit counseling services. These services have considerable benefits because they allow you to immediately reduce your monthly payments which results in some serious financial relief for you. Also, these services frequently are able to obtain lower interest rates and fees associated with your credit accounts as well, which is realized in a smaller amount of debt you are required to pay. The drawback to debt consolidation services is only about 33% of people actually qualify for these services. Another drawback is you are not able to use your credit while you are working with a debt consolidation agency and your credit rating may be negatively impacted as well.
When faced with a credit situation where you are completely over your head and feel as if you have nowhere to turn then you should consider a debt consolidation loan or debt consolidation services. You may or may not qualify for these services, but if you do it is a great way to help you pay off your debts immediately and realize relief while restructuring your debt and disciplining yourself to pay it off. Of course, these options should only be considered once you have evaluated your true financial standing by evaluating your income and monthly bills. Most likely you will be able to manage your bills on your own with some good old fashioned discipline and budgeting and simply cutting back and avoiding those consumer items that are simply unnecessary. You should not live beyond your means and definitely should not seek a debt consolidation loan or use debt consolidation services to help you do so.

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