For disciplined consumers, plastic can be fantastic. A debit card and credit card allow you to make purchases safer and easier without having to carry cash. That begs the question: When should you use a debit card vs credit card?
Should you save money or pay off debt? For total financial health, you want to carry little debt and have savings for emergencies and retirement. But few of us get off to a perfect start. If you're looking at a pile of debt and no savings, which problem should you tackle first? The answer depends on several factors.
Every state has a statute of limitation under which debts become uncollectible. When a specified amount of time passes, the creditor must suspend collection efforts. The map below shows how many years it takes for a debt to become uncollectible in your state.
Note that some debts like government-backed student loans do not fall under these statutes.
The only way to improve your credit score when paying a collection (for most credit scoring models) is to convince the agency to delete your account in exchange for payment. Credit experts call this "pay for delete." You can use this sample letter to create your own note to collection agencies.
The class of 2018 graduated with an average college debt of $29,200 each, according to The Institute for College Access and Success. And things are getting worse. Because the previous year's figure had been $28,650. So is it possible to leave debt-free? Certainly. And even if you can't quite manage that happy state, you should be able to keep your loans well below average. So read on to discover how you can dramatically reduce your educational costs.