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Paying down credit cards sometimes involves debt relief

Far and away, one of the most challenging debts to overcome is credit card debt. Connecticut households, like most American households, carry an average of $18,000 in credit debt alone, which can be a daunting task to pay down for even the most frugal individuals. Thankfully, there are debt relief strategies available, though which one is best for a given situation can vary based on the individual or family involved. 

For households that do not qualify for balance transfers or loans, some experts suggest the so-called "snowball" method. This method involves choosing the credit card with the lowest balance and paying it off first while still paying the minimum on other cards. The card with the next-lowest balance follows, and so on. This can be psychologically helpful as paying off one card entirely can help motivate the card holder to continue positive habits. 

Another method is the "avalanche" method, which is essentially the reverse of the snowball. It involves taking the highest-balance card and paying it down first, then working backwards. While this can help save money on interest, it is a much longer, much less-rewarding process for some people. Some experts recommend a blend of both options for households facing larger amounts of debt. 

Of course, debt relief of this type is not always available to every Connecticut family. For households facing insurmountable death, filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be the most fiscally responsible decision to make. Filing for bankruptcy means many debts can be reduced or forgiven outright, allowing the family to rebuild a stronger financial foundation. 

Source: Nasdaq.com, "What Is the Best Way to Pay Down Credit Card Debt? It Depends", Nov. 7, 2017

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