Debt Payoff Goal Calcuator
Is there a specific date that you’d like to pay off a particular date by? This handy calculator can help you figure out how much you’ll have to pay per month to meet your goal. Simply enter the principal balance owed, the annual interest rate, and a month and year that you’d like to have your debt paid off by.
Press CALCULATE, and you’ll see a payment amount you will have to make every month to pay off your debt by the desired goal. In addition, you’ll see the number of payments required and the interest costs attached to this schedule of payment.
Preparing For Success
A mountain of bills isn't built overnight. It's a long, slow process that creeps up on you. One minute you think you're doing fine and the next you're trying to figure out which bills you can get away without paying this month.
Finding yourself owing more than you can reasonably afford to pay is no fun, but you're not the first person to land in this sticky wicket and you certainly won't be the last. Although things may seem bleak at the moment, the truth is that all you really need is time to pay off what you owe.
Well, time and a solid plan for repayment. The good news is that you can do a lot on your own through planning and perseverance, and there are resources available to help you through the process.
If you're looking for ways to create a viable plan to deal with your financial obligations, here are just a few strategies that could help you get your ducks in a row and create a plan that will get you to your goals of financial solvency and proper money management.
List and Prioritize Financial Obligations
Before you can begin to pay off creditors, you first need to be fully aware of what you owe and how much interest you're accruing on each account. So start by creating a list of absolutely everyone you owe money to, including the most recent balances and the interest rates attached.
From there, you face the arduous task of prioritizing your accounts for repayment, and this can be a bit difficult for the financial novice. Still, it's not impossible so long as you're diligent and logical.
You'll want to compare and contrast balances, interest rates, rates of accrual, and so on as a means of determining which bills belong at the top of your priority list. Often, those with the highest interest rates will rank near the top.
But don't forget that you can also think about consolidating debt. If you have two credit cards, try to move the balance of the higher-interest card to the lower-interest card.
You might not pay it off any faster, but thanks to less interest accumulating on the account, you'll end up owing less in the long run
Create a Budget
Once you have a list of priorities pertaining to paying off creditors, you need to compare it to your current budget to put a plan for repayment into action. If you don't have a budget already, now is a great time to make one.
And if you're not quite sure how to get started creating a budget - don't feel bad; most of us are never taught to do so. And you can find free templates online to use as a springboard. Or simply sit down with a pencil and paper and create two columns: one for income and one for expenses.
When you get a good look at the money coming in versus the money going out, you can see where errors are occurring and begin to find ways to balance your budget, live within your means, and pay off what you owe.
Trimming the fat is a necessary evil when you find yourself in over your head where your finances are concerned. Luckily, there are a number of ways to tighten the belt and get back on track with a sustainable financial plan.
The first thing you might want to do is cut back on dining and entertainment expenses, as well as frivolous purchases. Try not to use your credit cards at all. If you don't have cash, don't make a purchase!
Once you've whittled down your expenses to the bare bones, the next hurdle is taking the money that's not going to your regular bills and apportioning it to cover what you owe to creditors. And even here, there could be a ray of sunshine.
If you're strapped for cash and working with a limited income, simply call your creditors and ask about possible debt forgiveness. Many are willing to work with you to reduce your balance and set up a payment plan so that they don't have to send you to collections.
Keep in mind that collectors take as much as 60% of the money they collect as payment for their services. If your creditors can get at least 50% of what you owe directly, they're better off (and so are you).
Pay More Towards the Principle
There is perhaps no better way to pay off your financial obligations quicker than by directing extra cash towards the principle each month, reducing the interest accumulated and the amount you ultimately end up owing.
Just make sure you talk to your lenders first about how additional payments are applied towards the balance. In some cases, you'll have to cut a separate check if you want it to be applied to the principle you owe rather than the account as a whole.
And some lenders don't allow for early repayment - you could actually be penalized for paying your outstanding obligations early. Before you start paying extra each month, it's important to understand the policies for every account.
This will help to ensure that the money you've borrowed gets paid off in the most expedient, efficient, and financially sound manner.
Use Windfalls Accordingly
Any time you end up with extra cash in your coffers, don't hesitate to apply it towards your outstanding balances. You can have fun money, build up a savings, and even invest once you've paid your creditors.
Until then, every penny should go towards getting yourself out of the red. So rather than using your inheritance, your work bonus, or your income tax return on the same frivolous expenditures that landed you in hot water in the first place, use your windfall wisely to plan for a brighter financial future.
Talk to a Professional
There's just no reason to go it alone if you're struggling to repay clamoring creditors. It's easy to feel trapped, confused, and frustrated when you owe a ton of money, but don't let that stop you from finding a way to get back in the black.
There are professional financial planners that have the knowledge and experience to help you settle your outstanding balances and create a workable plan for repayment. By using the resources available to you, you'll soon find yourself in a much better financial situation and well on your way to a debt-free future.