These days it is not uncommon for people to be on the receiving end of overdue payment notices and other letters of demand from lenders, due to them having trouble paying their loans on time.
Likewise you are not alone if you can't seem to clear debt, are having your accounts turned over to debt collectors, and are concerned that you may lose your car to repossession or even worse, your home to foreclosure.
In the world we live in today it is a sad fact that many people will face a financial crisis at some point in their lives however, the good news is that generally this can be overcome and a person's financial situation doesn't have to go from bad to worse.
Taking a loan out for something can be a daunting undertaking and you can feel as though you are making a 'deal with the devil'... Make no mistake about it, if you don't pay back the money and clear the debt you owe to a lender, they will pursue you to get their capital (with interest) back!
You can't get away from the fact that you actually DO have to pay the loaned money back, as this is only fair however, there are a bunch of clauses containing a whole lot of small print in loan documentation that can 'trip people up' if they are not 100% sure of what they are getting themselves into.
Let's face it, most things of any value require some form of credit to purchase, so it is more than likely that you will need access to a loan at some stage of your life and it is at this point that many people can open themselves up to potential problems in the future.
The real trick to it all is to 'do the hard yards' now (prior to getting the actual loan) to ensure you guard against any future surprises.
There are a number of simple things you can do to try to avoid future issues with your loan:
· Shop around to find the loans (credit cards, etc) with the best interest rates, setup charges, ongoing charges, as well as manageable terms & conditions.
· Check, Check & Re-Check the small print as some of the terms & conditions can be extremely burdensome and you don't want to be locked too heavily into a loan that won't allow you to make extra repayments (or charge you dearly for the privilege), or a loan that makes you obtain (and use) an associated credit card, etc.
· Try to avoid loan packages that won't let you pay out the entire loan early without charging you exorbitant amounts of money.
· Think carefully about taking out some form of Income Protection Insurance (for longer term loans), as these policies are designed to cover your loan or credit card repayments if you are unable to pay them due to unemployment or sickness. As with anything, you will need to search out the best and most appropriate package for your particular situation.
When performing this debt analysis and comparing various loan / credit card packages (or anything really) make a list of all the good points and bad points (pro's & con's) about each package on a piece of paper (or on a computer if you prefer), as this will make it easier to compare them all to each other.
It is much easier to compare different packages if they are written down in front of you. By doing this you will be able to work your way through the comparisons methodically, without getting confused.
Obviously, the good points (pro's) will align with your preferred requirements from the loan package and the bad points (con's) will be the things that do not fit in with your preferred requirements.
Hi-light the pro's in green and the con's in red (or whatever colours you like), as this will enable you to maintain a visual reference of the points and make things much easier.
Debt Analysis doesn't have to be rocket science, you just have to keep things simple and follow a process and, by using this comparison method, you will quickly be able to see which package best suits your particular requirements.
Be aware that on occasions you may have to compromise on certain things contained within the loan packages, just make sure that the points you compromise on are not too onerous and will not place you in financial hardship in the future, as you definitely don't need the financial stress!
The benefits of using this method of comparison are twofold:
1. From your initial choices of loans, you are able to identify the best possible loan package for your particular situation.
2. You actually learn more about your particular loans' terms and conditions from reading through them and comparing them to others.
By using this comparison method you will be 'one step ahead of the game' when weighing up all the options for your next loan.
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