Get a grip on debt before it grips you

Many of us fall into the ubiquitous debt trap and struggle to get out. But there are ways to escape from debt, and there is no time like the present to start working on it. And the first thing you have to do is manage any borrowing and spending habits you may have.

Borrow only when absolutely necessary, and always look around for the best interest rates. Also, make sure you pay the balance every month, and possibly more, and take advantage of the interest free loan period.

Credit card spending is a risky business, but, if used wisely, can be a valuable money managing tool. Credit cards are very handy in a state of emergency, and sometime also boast great money saving features. These features include gift certificates and travel rewards, to name just a few. On the flip side, careless credit card use can lead you down the road to financial difficulty.

If you are suffering from a substantial amount of credit card debt, or any other high rate debt for that matter, a wise move would be to consolidate borrowing. This means taking out an unsecured personal loan to pay up your other debt. In this way you are not only afforded lower interest rates, but you will also not have to worry about too many payments as you will only be paying one creditor.

Another possibility is to trade higher personal loans for lower rate debt. This may not be ideal when rates are rising, but will work when rates are on the decline, when new loans become cheaper than existing ones. Even though many experts suggest that taking out a loan to pay off debt is like financial suicide, in this case you will be paying a lower rate than you did before.

Borrowing can be advantageous, like when cash is needed to purchase a short term need like a car.

Another idea may to liquidate investments as opposed to getting into debt over a purchase, but you have to understand that selling high quality investments to cover short term debt is not always the best option. Instead, a better alternative would be to borrow against your securities, but this is not the always the right option for everyone.

The reason for this is that even if the value of your securities decline, you may still be obligated to repay the loan and interest. And if the value of the insecurities decline, you may have to deposit funds, additional securities, or sell existing securities in your account.

Finding yourself in a financial crisis is no walk in the park, however, there are many ways to clear your debt and your name and have a financially secure future. It is a good idea to speak to a financial advisor who can offer some sound advice on the appropriate action for your circumstances. Remember, it is never too late to change your spending and borrowing habits to become for financially free.