According to Bankrate.com, 55% of the country has a larger emergency fund than credit card debt level. However, nearly 24% of Americans claim to owe more credit card debt than they currently have in the bank. An additional 16% admit to having neither credit card debt nor savings.
Even though credit card balances began to decline during the financial downturn of 2007, American consumers’ fundamental attitudes toward spending saw little change. According to Bankrate.com, the average rate of American households saving fell from 5.4% in 2008 to 3.9% in 2012. Even though Americans may be carrying lower credit card balances, many Americans are also living with various forms of debt including mortgage and student loans. Interestingly, this is not limited to one particular socioeconomic status. Bankrate.com estimates that approximately a quarter of all income levels currently have more credit card debt than money in their savings accounts.
With more than 25 years handling consumer bankruptcy cases in the Chicagoland area, Cutler & Associates, Ltd. can help you understand whether you qualify for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition. You can reach our Aurora or Schaumburg office by dialing (847) 868-2265.
Having a credit card can help you prepare for emergencies, rent a car, or improve your credit score, but you shouldn’t use your credit card for every single purchase. One of the biggest mistakes you can make when you begin using a credit card is not tracking your spending habits and choosing to spend up to your monthly limit. Here are some tips to help you manage your everyday expenses without relying exclusively on your credit card.
Save money for emergencies
Unexpected repairs, costly medical bills, and other financial emergencies are a part of life. In these situations, it can be very helpful to have a credit card on hand. However, it’s a good idea to not become completely dependent on one financial tool to cover these unexpected costs. One way to prepare for these unexpected events is by saving up an emergency fund. Whenever you have some extra income, you can keep adding to this emergency financial pool.
Keep your credit cards open
Your credit history makes up a large portion of your credit report and credit score. If you cancel your credit cards, this action will erase the good credit you have established over the years. As a result, you may find it more difficult to qualify for a future mortgage, car loan, or even an apartment lease. Instead of cancelling your credit card accounts altogether, actively limit yourself from spending your entire credit limit.
Try using a secured credit card
If you are worried about accumulating too much credit card debt, you may want to try taking out a secured credit card instead. Unlike traditional credit cards, secured credit card limits are based on an actual amount you deposit on your own. Essentially, this means you are using your own money to borrow against the card.
To learn about filing for bankruptcy in the Chicago area, contact Cutler & Associates, Ltd. at (847) 868-2265. Since 1990, our Aurora bankruptcy attorneys have focused on Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 cases. By calling today, we can stop collection calls, UCC 1 filings, and wage garnishments.
Mr. Cutler made me feel at ease immediately. He knows what he is doing and walked me through the process with no glitches. One of the things that stuck out is that he is not hard to get a hold of. He answers his own phone and is easily accessible. I would highly recommend him.
When most people begin college, they do not have a credit history, job, or substantial savings fund. Nonetheless, credit card companies flock college campuses, offering these young adults the chance to sign up for their first credit cards. In fact, studies show that 86% of college students have at least one credit card in their name.
College students who sign up for a credit card while in school are more likely to continue using this initial credit card for the rest of their lives. This ABC News report shares some important spending tips for college students with credit cards. Specifically, it outlines what charges should and should not be left to this small piece of valuable plastic.
By calling Cutler & Associates, Ltd., we can stop collection calls, UCC 1 filings, and wage garnishments. Learn more by giving our Aurora bankruptcy attorneys a call at (847) 868-2265.