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Debt Consolidation Loans: FAQs

by S1m
applying for your mortgage

Getting into debt is one of the most stressful things you can do, and it’s easy for debt to snowball until it gets out of control. If you’ve got into this state, there are some options to help you get your finances back under control, such as a debt consolidation loan.

Debt Consolidation Loans

Debt consolidation is a type of debt refinancing. You take out one loan to pay off many others. It can be a confusing thing. If your debts are snowballing and you’re considering debt consolidation, make sure you understand it first. 

Will a debt consolidation loan affect my credit rating? 

A debt consolidation loan will not damage your credit rating, as long as you keep up the agreed repayments. Missed or late payments will damage your credit score, so be careful and make sure you’ve made an agreement you can manage. 

What if I can’t afford to repay my debts? 

If you’re aren’t able to afford your debt repayments as it is, it’s unlikely that borrowing more money will help you to solve the problem. If you aren’t sure what to do next, speak a to a debt expert or a debt charity to help you decide whether debt consolidation loans or other methods of managing debts will work for you. They can talk you through the different options available to you and help you find the right solution. 

How much does a debt consolidation loan cost? 

The cost of a loan like this will depend on a number of different factors, such as your credit rating, how long you want to borrow the money for, any set-up costs, and the interest rate of the loan. 

You could find a loan with a lower rate of interest, by taking out a loan that is secured against your property. If you do this, remember that by securing the loan against property can put it at risk if you don’t keep up with your repayments. Weigh up this risk carefully. 

Can I consolidate debts with a credit card?

Debt consolidation on a 0% APR credit card is a common solution for consolidating credit card debts, although you could include some other debts too. To do this, you will usually need to pay a balance transfer fee, but it can allow you to shift your debt from a higher-cost credit card. Look for an interest-free introductory rate which will mean that the debts put on the new card won’t increase for a certain amount of time. 

You should aim to reduce or pay off your debt while the interest-free period lasts to get the full benefit of doing this. When this period is over, interest will start to push up your debts again, so the more you can pay off before the interest starts, the better. 

What is APR?

APR is the Annual Percentage Rate. It is used to compare the costs of borrowing on a credit card, mortgage, loan, or other types of borrowing over a period of twelve months. APR includes any interest and any additional fees or charges on the loan. Extra fees can be spread out throughout the year, making APR an average of the interest that you will pay.

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