Step Four: Explore Options for Moving Your Debt
Be wary of those debt consolidation services you hear advertised. After all, "They're not offering these services for free, they're making money," says Kofke. Often, there are fees associated with debt-consolidation programs, so read the fine print very carefully.
One service that financial strategist Matthew Coan, founder of the financial advice site Casavvy.com, recommends is a balance-transfer credit card. "These cards let you transfer existing credit card debt onto them and they give you an introductory rate where you pay zero percent interest," says Coan. Ideally you should look for a card with 18 months of zero interest, that's about the best deal available. Know that when those interest-free months are up, you'll be back to paying interest, and it could be a higher rate than your current card. However, if you're able to pay off a large amount of that debt in 18 months, the switch is worth it.