Becoming a Credit-Savvy Consumer Post-Bankruptcy: Part 2
Becoming better with credit post-bankruptcy can be a daunting task for many clients. You’ve repaid or dissolved your existing debts, and are about to close your bankruptcy case with a new and improved outlook on your financial life. Unfortunately for many in your position, even well-intentioned Americans can return to their debt-full ways, even after the many lessons learned from their bankruptcy filing.
As a result, it’s important to take a first (or now second) look at the best ways to break the cycle of debt, this time for good! Continuing from part one of our series, here are five additional strategies for making the best of your post-bankruptcy life:
(1) It’s Cheaper to Change Your Mind.
Many people make impulse buys. In fact, we all have at some point in our consumer experience. But it’s not the end of your financial world if regret eventually creeps in and encourages you to “return” and item. If you come to your budgetary senses when buying big tickets items on credit, remember you have three business days from the date of the contract signature to cancel the item and get your money back.
(2) Set Aside the Cash for big Credit Buys.
While this is the toughest advice to take, it makes the most monetary sense to try. Adding new debt to your current expenses post-bankruptcy is, in many circumstances, a recipe for disaster. So, when you can, save for all expenditures—especially those purchases for personal enjoyment. And when emergencies do force you to pay with plastic, make the purchase, pay your balance and don’t charge again until you do.
(3) Don’t Fall for the Sales Pitch.
We understand that the pressure to buy a product at its “new low price,” for a “limited time only,” can be intoxicating. But it’s vital that you don’t let businesses bully you into believing that you’ll miss a certain deal if you don’t buy right NOW. Instead, understand that anything you can purchase impulsively at a certain price can be leveraged at a later time—if not at one retailer, then at another who will match it. Take your time.
(4) Use Credit Alternatives
Prepayment or layaway plans are a couple of less costly ways to make your hard-earned money go farther while getting exactly what you want and paying for it over time. These credit alternatives are good at breaking the debt cycle—if you can find them—especially at such ubiquitous stores as Sears, T.J. Maxx, and Burlington Coat Factory.
(5) Remove “Monthly Payment Options” From Your Vocabulary
While paying for goods and services over time may sound appealing, it can often be as costly as paying with credit. The “as seen on TV” offers for products in three “easy payments” of $9.99 never are when compared to something that may, in one lump sum, otherwise cost $25.95. Save that %15 by saving your money before buying what you need, rather than paying in costly installments.
And remember, if you’re drowning in credit card debt or other consumer debt issues, knowing a qualified bankruptcy attorney can help you face many of your financial fears, yielding the right kinds of support, information and insights—at a low cost— for a viable and secure future beyond all of the things in store in 2011. The bankruptcy experts at the Law Offices of John T. Orcutt offer a totally FREE debt consultation and now, more than ever, it’s time to take them up on their offer. Just call toll free to 1-888-234-4181, or make an appointment online at www.billsbills.com.