Serious Signs Of Debt Problems

by : Peter Kenny

Since there are so many Americans who are dealing with various levels of debt, it can often be a difficult task to determine how serious your own debt troubles really are. One of the major reasons this is true is that people just don't know how to read the signs. You also need to decide if you are someone who will be able to manage their debt on their own with some simple saving and cutting back strategies or if you need a professional to help you find your way out of the mire of debt. If you want to know more, then read on for some pointers to assist you in determining your own debt status.

Here are eight potential areas or trouble spots that could mean you are on a bad financial path:

You have rising credit card balances but your income is decreasing. You add more debt by applying for credit cards or cash advances to pay existing debt. Your credit cards are at or near their upper limit. You are only paying minimum balances on credit cards and other revolving debts. You are receiving calls from creditors regarding overdue bills. You regularly put more charges on your credit card than you act make in payments. You are working extended hours in order to get your debt paid down. You are using your cards because you do not have money at all rather than as a convenient option for emergencies

Of course, any of these circumstances may not necessarily mean you are having debt troubles. Rather, it could be a temporary circumstance that can be resolved on your own. This may be true even if several of these instances apply to your situation. Then again, if they have been ongoing for some time or represent a pattern, you may have reached a point where you need outside help to get your debt load under control.

Examine your situation carefully to see if there are areas where you could change to resolve the situation. For example, just paying the minimum balance on a couple of occasions may not mean anything and could be a temporary condition. If you know that you've been just paying the minimum balance, you need to be careful. You could be headed for troubles down the road.

If you feel like you are having serious problems or could be going down that path, you should not wait until things hit critical mass. Contact a reputable debt counseling service. Find out what you can do to improve your circumstances through some new strategies or through a customized program that will help you get on the right path to financial stability and a lower debt load.

A final note: Before you contact that counselor, be sure you've thoroughly examined your own personal financial situation. Look at factors like savings, spending habits, the amount of your monthly income, etc. By doing, this you will know how much trouble you may be in and how much assistance from a counseling agency you will actually need.