Tackling your out-of-control credit card bills
Published 20/05/2010 | 05:00
If your credit card debt has built up, consider taking out a personal loan with a low annual percentage rate (APR) to pay it off.
Find a loan with the lowest APR and take it out for the shortest possible term, is the advice of the National Consumer Agency on itsyourmoney.ie.
Then cancel your card, or don't use it until you have paid off your loan.
Credit unions are reporting they are inundated at the moment with requests from members for loans to clear credit card debts.
Sligo Credit Union manager Barry O'Flynn says it tends to approve loans to clear credit card debts if the amount owed is less than €2,000.
However, the Sligo branch, which has 12,000 members and €35m in savings, is increasingly getting applications from people with card debt of €10,000 or more.
In these circumstances the credit union boss said the approach was to coach people to request that their card company stop all interest charges and penalties building up on the debt.
The card-holder is then advised to get the company to accept a repayment of only what the person can afford.