Do I Have a Debt Problem?
Do you have a debt problem?
For the most part, asking yourself some questions – and then answering yourself honestly – can help you determine whether or not you have a debt problem. Here are some questions to ask yourself about your financial and debt situation:
- How much do you pay on debt each month? If it is just the minimum amount on most of your cards, there may be an issue, since you are not reducing the amount you owe, but rather treading water.
- How close are you to the limit on your charge cards? If you are just under the limit on your charge cards, you may have a debt problem. After all, if you are using all of your available credit, you are getting into too much debt.
- Do you have a second job? Consider the reasons that you have a second job, if you do. Is it just to pay the bills? If you have to take a second job to pay the minimum on your debts, that is a pretty good indication that there is a debt problem.
- Is it impossible to save money? Are you always saying that now is not the time to save? If you do not have any money available to set aside, that could mean that you have too much debt, and that too much of your income is going to pay your debt.
- Do you borrow money from friends and relatives a lot? This is a major red flag. If you are constantly asking others to bail you out, your financial health is in pretty rough shape.
- Do you know where your debt came from? Can you account for what is on your credit cards? If you don’t know why you seem to be maxed out, that could be a serious problem, since it could mean that you are not paying close attention to your finances.
- Are you hiding bills and debt from people you know? If you are trying to keep others from knowing how much debt you have, and what you are spending money on, it may indicate that – deep down – you know you have a problem.
- Do unexpected expenses cause you to panic? If you have a car repair or have to make some other unexpected expenditure, do you become extremely worried because there is no way to pay for it? This is an indication that you may be too maxed out, without an emergency fund.
- Are regularly bouncing checks or trying to “float” them? If you are regularly going into the negative on your accounts, and trying creative ways to pay for things, this could mean that your financial health is poor.
Even one of the above symptoms could indicate a debt problem. However, if you have more than one of them, it may be time to take action to fix the problem. You need to carefully consider your situation, and try to cut out as many expenses as possible. You may have to downsize, sell some of your possessions or take other action.
If work hard to reform your financial habits and get out of debt, you can fix your problem. But first you have to admit that there is a debt problem.
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