Debt stresses you out. It eats away at your well-being. It’s always there, lurking in the background, a black cloud following you around.
The worst kind of debt for that? Credit card debt.
We’re not just saying that. A number of recent studies have found that unpaid credit card debt, rolling over month to month, causes more stress than other kinds of debt, like mortgages or medical debt or even student loans.
That’s because at some level, you know your credit card companies are ripping you off by charging you high interest rates on your balances.
The COVID-19 pandemic and its economic fallout aren’t helping, either. In a recent Money survey, a whopping 25% of Americans said credit card debt is a source of daily stress right now. And for those who’ve lost their jobs or taken a pay cut, 37% are stressed about their credit card debt.
The Money survey had some eye-opening findings:
- Nearly 30% of credit card users are using their cards more than they were before the pandemic, especially for food and self-care items like toothpaste.
- About 11% of Americans aren’t just stressed, they’re “very stressed” about credit card debt.
- City dwellers are more likely to be leaning on credit cards more now than they were pre-pandemic (39%), compared to suburban residents (25%) or rural residents (22%).
How to Lower Your Financial Stress Level
These days, Americans owe roughly $1 trillion in credit card debt.
Adding insult to injury, credit card interest rates often rise above 20%, persistently gobbling up so much of your income that you’ll never get ahead. All you’re doing is paying off the interest, not the principal, so you’re financially treading water.
It’s not a pretty picture. Do you see yourself in this picture? Are you stressed out about it?
So what’s the solution?
Well, you might consider refinancing your debt by taking out a debt-consolidation loan.
You get a personal loan from a lender at a lower interest rate. You use that loan to pay off the balances on your high-interest credit cards. Then you repay the lender a fixed amount every month for a set time period, usually two to five years.
This may sound like a hassle, but the secret is that it’s way easier than you think.
If you owe your credit card companies $50,000 or less, a website called AmOne will match you with a low-interest loan you can use to pay off every single one of your balances.
The benefit? You’ll be left with one bill to pay each month. And because personal loans have lower interest rates (AmOne rates start at 3.99% APR), you’ll get out of debt that much faster. Plus: No credit card payment this month.
AmOne keeps your information confidential and secure, which is probably why after 20 years in business, it still has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.
It takes two minutes to see if you qualify for up to $50,000 online. You do need to give AmOne a real phone number in order to qualify, but don’t worry — they won’t spam you with phone calls.
If you’re stressed out about your credit card debt, maybe it’s time to take action and turn the corner.
This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.