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How can you pay off credit cards the fastest?

Your credit cards started out small, but over time and with payments always made on time, their limits grew. You didn't think much of it at the time, and you kept to your typical spending patterns.

Suddenly, you realized just how far your debts had crept up on you. What you once might have paid off in a month or two would take you years. What can you do to start addressing the issue you've discovered?

The first thing is to target the debt you want to pay off and start paying it down right away. If you have two credit cards and one is maxed out, it might be in your best interest to begin paying the maxed-out card off bit by bit. You can even call the bank or lender to see if you can get a reduced interest rate, especially if you've been a good client.

You can also combine your debts to make a bigger dent in them and to get ahead of your credit card debt. Instead of paying two payments each month, consolidate the debts onto an interest-free card. Some cards have introductory rates with no interest for one year. If you can get one, use it to make a lot of progress on your cards. Once your year is up, consider switching to another card with a similar feature, so you avoid paying interest fees. You will need to pay transfer fees if you do this, so weigh them against your current interest rates.

These are a couple tips that can help you if you're in over your head with debt. Other possibilities could include talking to an attorney about bankruptcy or considering working with a credit card debt reduction program.

Source: Bank of America, "4 strategies to pay off credit card debt fast," accessed June 30, 2017

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