Credit cards have significantly made making payments as easy as possible, and they are more like financial life-savers that come in super handy every time we need to make a large purchase.
However, that is only the case until you overextend yourself. In other words, you are way over your head in terms of the debt on your credit card because of spending your card unwisely. In such times, you will find yourself caught in a cruel cycle of repaying the ever-increasing debt.
Signs That Show You Have Excessive Credit Card Debt
The question that arises here is how do you know your debt has spiraled out of control and has gone from normal to abnormal?
There are a few warning signs and red flags that clearly indicate you have too much debt on your plate.
You Hit your Credit Limits Regularly
When you have too much credit card debt, chances are that your credit cards have all maxed out and you keep hitting your credit card limits. This happens when you spend too much on your credit cards in order to reach your spending limit. This is a true indication of your debt spiraling out of control. What’s even worse is that if things continue as is, the interest rates applied on your credit card are likely to prevent you from ever coming out of this vicious cycle.
A simple way to deal with this is to put down your cards and resist the urge or temptation to use it. When you manage to do that, you will be able to gradually decrease your debt, except the interest that you are already accruing outside of it.
You Use Your Credit Card on a Whim
Using credit cards to pay for stuff is one thing, however, using them out of impulse without an actionable plan is another serious issue altogether. If anything, it will eventually result in excessive credit card debt that will take you months to repay.
Always remember an important thumb of rule for using credit cards: create a strict spending regimen and never use your credit cards without having a definite plan. For instance, if your goal is to benefit from a cash back program or a rewards program, using your credit card is a given. However, if you are using it just because it is apparently your only mode of payment, that is not a very smart thing to do.
If you really wish to bring your debt back under control, it is time to pass on and give up on unnecessary expenditures for the time being.
You Pay Off Credit Cards with Other Credit Cards
This is a sign of falling in too deep on credit card debt, that is when you whip out a second card in order to pay off the debt of the first one. While paying off credit cards using other credit cards is next to impossible because credit card companies typically don’t allow you to do that, you might really be tempted to do it anyways. So much so that you end up working your way around it by either taking advance cash on the second card or by using a balance transfer in order to move the debt from the first card to the second.
This is a serious indication of the fact that you are spending way beyond your means and are caught too deep in extreme debt.
You Are Unable to Take a Hit at Your Balance
Let’s assume that you are trying to limit your overall expenses and are also meeting your due payments every month in order to control your credit card debt. However, the balance on your next credit card bill still hasn’t dropped as much as you hoped it would.
That is probably because your payments are way too small compared to your interest charges, which is why they haven’t been able to offset the interest fee. Needless to say, the debt on your credit card can easily get out of control, so even if you pay the minimum amount that you owe on your credit card balance, it won’t impact your debt as much.
The solution to this is being systematic about your payments, that is, identify the balance with the highest interest rates and get those out of the way first. Continue this payment hierarchy as you gradually move to making the minimum payments on your other balances.
You Have a High Credit Utilization Ratio
Credit utilization ratio is simply a measure of the total amount of revolving credit you have available compared to how much credit you are actually utilizing. When you end up using too much of your available credit, you are likely to end up with a large credit card debt, and this can easily deter lenders from giving you loans.
There is no set standard that exactly determines how much credit utilization should be considered “too high”. However, a majority of financial experts say that you should aim for about 30 percent or below. Anything higher than that is a sure-sot red flag, and you must act on it before it is too late
You Have No Room to Spare
When dealing with a large amount of debt, you can barely enjoy the little things in life. This may include things like a late-night drive to Pizza Hut or perhaps, going out for a small drink. That happens because once all your monthly bills are paid; there is hardly any room to spare in terms of your budget. Your funds are already so low that once you have paid for, and covered all the basic expenses, there is really no space for any other unnecessary expense.
If you find yourself in such a tight situation, you must realize that your credit card debt has gone through the roof and it is time to do something about it.
These strategies and solutions can go a long way in fixing your financial debt dilemma. However, you must always remember that it is extremely vital to recognize and acknowledge that your credit card debt is getting out of hands. Only when you identify the problem will you be able to carry out effective measures to curtail it.