In an economy like that of Wisconsin and the United States, credit cards play an important role, offering convenience through cashless payments to make both major minor purchases. Nonetheless, consumers need to pay off their credit card debts each month to avoid debts that mount with ever-higher interest rates and to avoid being cut off by credit card companies.
Medical expenses such as hospital bills from an accident can suddenly and negatively affect a family's finances. People with limited income and resources can suffer and end up smothered by debt because of unforeseen expenses. Paying off debts may simply not be possible.
The numbers are in: for the last three years, the number of people filing for bankruptcy, including in Wisconsin, has gone down. There were just over 22,500 filings in the state in 2013, according to U.S. Bankruptcy Court records, a 9.5-percent decrease from 2012. Chapter 7 bankruptcies that can wipe out credit card debt, medical debt and utility bills represent 75 percent of the filings. This year, bankruptcy lawyers expect that filings will remain the same or drop lower.
An improving job market is good news to the residents of Wisconsin, however, to economic experts, declining employment rates could mean an increase in bankruptcy filings.
Military service personnel, including those in Outagamie, Wisconsin, risk their lives to serve and protect our country. During deployment, however, these military personnel are at risk of accumulating credit card debt.
Balance transfer credit cards with zero percent interest rates are very attractive, especially during the holidays. Transferring debt from a high-interest rate card to a zero percent card can help the consumer pay off the debt faster. Wisconsin residents should take note, however, that strategy can sometimes do more harm than good, leading to financial challenges, more debt and creditor harassment.
Wisconsin residents know that holiday overspending using plastic leaves many people with substantial debt that can take years to pay off. The best way to deal with the problem is to understand the realities of credit card debt and make more informed decisions.
As the holiday season approaches, many Wisconsin retailers will be offering their customers great deals. Exhortations to "buy now, pay later" will be seen in many stores. This kind of offer enables consumers to make big purchases that they can pay off over a span of years. People should be wary about these great offers, however, because they can create financial challenges and lead to high credit card debt.
While some Appleton, Wisconsin, residents are taking advantage of occasional sales at malls and different department stores, other people are saving up and waiting for Black Friday. The day after Thanksgiving, often known as Black Friday in the retail world, is a day when hundreds of people line up outside of stores and enjoy great deals and discounts. However, many retail businesses will make Black Friday an opportunity to offer perks that may attract consumers to sign up for store credit cards, which potentially result in credit card debt and more personal expenses.
Residents in Wisconsin and most Americans in general always try to stick to their budget plans. However, there are instances when a person's finances cannot cover all expenses until the next payday. Many people turn to payday loans or cash advances as a temporary debt relief in such a situation, but this relief option could create further problems down the line.