Thursday, 01 December 2016 18:49

How to Get a Great Auto Loan Interest Rate

Having a car represents more than just another possession—it’s a way for you to get to school and work, a way to transport your kids to their activities every week, and the freedom to go where you want when you want. But for many people, the process of getting a new car is filled with uncertainty about whether you would be able to get a car with a payment you can afford. The interest rate has a significant impact on the total cost of your car and your monthly payments, so these simple steps to getting the best auto loan rate can help.

Calculate Total Costs

Most people look at the monthly payment to decide if they can afford a loan, and while it’s important to know that you will be able to make the monthly payments you should also consider the loan’s total cost. A common tactic used by car dealers is to extend the term of your loan (the total years and months you’re paying for the car) to reduce monthly payments. However, that increases the total amount of interest you pay so you want to take that into consideration.

Shop Around

You probably spent a few hours online researching your new car before you bought it—a 2015 Autotrader report indicates that people spend around 12.5 hours online before they even head out to a dealership—but how much time did you spend shopping around for the best auto loan rate? There are some misconceptions out there about auto loan rates. Some of the most common are:

• Rates are basically all the same so there’s no point to shop around
• The rate that the dealership finds you is going to be the best you can get
• The dealership has your best interest at heart

In truth, if you haven’t taken time to shop around and get pre-approved for financing you might be vulnerable to a higher interest rate than the dealer offers you, or even terms where the dealer marks up the interest rate (which could cost you several thousand dollars more over the life of the loan).

Know Where To Go

Banks and dealer financing are not the only places you can get an auto loan. Often a better rate is available from a local credit union, like Wasatch Peaks, where rates could be as much as 1 or 2 percent lower. While there are tools online where you can search for interest rates, often these will only show you large national lenders (even if you put in your zip code). A better option is to research local credit unions and contact them directly to find out what kind of interest rates are available. Credit unions only lend to their own members, but you should be able to join easily if you find one that will offer a good rate.

Know Your Credit Score

Before you start shopping around for interest rates, it’s a good idea to check your credit. This will help you identify any errors that could be dragging your score down, and if you do it far enough in advance you can take steps to increase your score if it’s low. Even a slight increase in your credit score could reduce your interest rate, saving you money.

Don’t pay more for the same car. Knowing how to get the best rate on your auto loan can help you get the best car for the best monthly payments, giving you the freedom to drive without putting a big dent in your bank account.

Published in Blog

Did you know that as a member of Wasatch Peaks Credit Union, you have many member benefits available to you? From shopping online and earning cash back to saving up to $15 on TurboTax®, being a Wasatch Peaks member really has its perks!

Wasatch Peaks and Powder Mountain are teaming up to bring you discount tickets! Wasatch Peaks members receive 15% off, making night tickets starting at less than $16, and day passes following in an affordable fashion. All you have to do is follow this exclusive link, and enter in the following (Case Sensitive) creditentials:

Club name = WPCU
Password = WPMember

The snow and weather are working in the favor of those of who ski or snowboard, so grab your poles or board and take this long weekend to hit the slopes! Wasatch Peaks wishes you the best of time and thanks you for being a member, right here in Utah.

Published in Blog
Thursday, 19 January 2017 19:01

52-Week Savings Challenge

Saving money can be difficult. It’s easy to have self-control at home, when you’re setting up your budget, but it can be much trickier to have that same self-control when you want to grab dinner out after a long day. Or maybe you see a sale on sneakers and your old ones are just getting so ratty and you think you’d definitely exercise more if you had good sneakers. And just look at them, they’re amazing!

Saving the simple way

The “52-Week Savings Challenge” is designed to make it easier to save. The idea is simple: Put away $1 the first week, then $2 the following week, followed by $3,, and then $4, all the way up to $52 the final week of the year. It might not sound like much, but if you follow the plan, you’ll save $1,378 over a year. Think you can handle that?

If you’re interested in following the calendar, you’ll need to prime the pot with a few dollars for the weeks you missed to start the year. If not, you can start in the first week of February (or whenever you’re reading this, there’s no time like the present!), which might be even better considering you won’t be trying to save the largest amounts at the same time you’re spending on last-minute holiday shopping. On the other hand, you could always use this as your holiday spending war chest.

We’ve got a guide appearing below to show how much you’ll need to save. We used Fridays for three reasons: First, because many people get paid on Fridays; second, because no one wants to take money out of their wallet on Mondays; and third, because there are 53 Fridays in 2016, so you can save extra money, or miss a week without ruining the program.

Taking it to the next level

There are three main weaknesses to the 52-week savings challenge. First, the money people save on this challenge tends to go into a jar somewhere. While the people who finish the challenge talk about the advantage of seeing their money in cash, which helps them stay motivated, the idea of $1400 sitting around the house is unnerving. It’s not earning interest and it’s begging for something bad to happen to it. Second, remembering to put away money every week can be a chore, particularly if you’ve got to look up how much you’re putting away every Friday, getting cash, breaking a big bill…wow, that sounds exhausting. Finally, the challenge is designed in such a way that the final three months can be pretty tough: you’ll need to put away nearly $50 per week for the last 14 weeks, which can be a tall order.

Wasatch Peaks can help with all of those problems, though. First, let’s earn some interest. We’ve got a ton of great savings plans, but if you’re just getting started with saving, they can be a little confusing. For a plan like this, in which you’ll be making regular deposits with a low balance for most of the year, and then withdrawing it eventually, you might want to try one of our interest-bearing Christmas Club accounts. Your money will make money, and you won’t have a jar of cash in the house.

Next, let’s make it simple. Obviously, the simplest thing to do is to set up direct deposit into your savings account, Christmas Club account, or other savings program. Unfortunately, the 52-week challenge makes that tough, because the amount you save changes every week. One possibility is to take the average. If you deposit $27 into your savings every Friday, you’ll end up with the same amount at the end of the year as the 52-week challenge. It’s not as interesting or fun that way, but you can set it up today and forget about it. You can also make monthly deposits of $120 to reach your goal, or take $54 out of every paycheck if you’re paid biweekly.

Finally, we need to deal with the end of the year problem. It can be extra tough to find money to save in December, and to make matters worse, back-loading the plan really hurts if you give up on it before it’s over. If you save diligently for nine months before getting distracted or receive a surprise bill that derails you, you will only have saved about half of what you planned, even though you worked for almost the whole year. The previous solutions we offered, the Christmas Club account and direct depositing the average amount help somewhat, but they take some of the fun out of the game.

Here’s an idea that keeps it fun, avoids the end of the year jam, and lets you earn interest: First, you need a list of the various amounts you’re going to save. You can print our chart really small, keep a spreadsheet on your phone, or just take a note card and write the numbers 1-52 on it. Then, whenever you make the choice to save money, you transfer that amount online or on our app (If you don’t have our app, check out our Peaks Mobile Banking™. Click here for Apple® and here for Android™) and cross off that number. At the end of the year, you’ve got to cross off all of them, so it becomes a real challenge. Gotta catch ’em all!

If you’re planning on trying the 52-week Savings Challenge, let us know. You can follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, then tell us what you’ve done to cut some fat out of your budget. Our members would love to hear your tips, and you might get some good ones from them. Members helping members!

January

Week

1

2

3

4

5

Date 

January 2

January 9

January 16

January 23

January 30

Savings this week

$1

$2

$3

$4

$5

Total Savings

$1

$3

$6

$10

$15

February

Week

6

7

8

9

Date

February 6

February 13

February 20

February 27

Savings this week

$6

$7

$8

$9

Total Savings

$21

$28

$36

$45

March

Week

10

11

12

13 

Date

March 5

March 12

March 19

March 26

Savings this week

$10

$11

$12

$13

Total Savings

$55

$66

$78

$92

April

Week

14

15

16

17

18

Date

April 2

April 9

April 16

April 23

April 30

Savings this week

$14

$15

$16

$17

$18

Total Savings

$105

$120

$136

$153

$171

May

Week

19

20

21

22

Date

May 7

May 14

May 21

May 28

Savings this week

$19

$20

$21

$22

Total Savings

$190

$210

$231

$253

June

Week

23

24

25

26

Date

June 4

June 11

June 18

June 25

Savings this week

$23

$24

$25

$26

Total Savings

$276

$300

$325

$351

July

Week

27

28

29

30

31

Date

July 2

July 9

July 16

July 23

July 30

Savings this week

$27

$28

$29

$30

$31

Total Savings

$378

$406

$435

$465

$496

August

Week

32

33

34

35

Date

August 6

August 13

August 20

August 27

Savings this week

$32

$33

$34

$35

Total Savings

$528

$561

$595

$630

September

Week

36

37

38

39

Date

September 3

September 10

September 17

September 24

Savings this week

$36

$37

$38

$39

Total Savings

$666

$703

$741

$780

October

Week

40

41

42

43

44

Date

October 1

October 8

October 15

October 22

October 29

Savings this week

$40

$41

$42

$43

$44

Total Savings

$820

$861

$903

$946

$990

 November

Week

45

46

47

48

Date

November 5

November 12

November 19

November 26

Savings this week

$45

$46

$47

$48

Total Savings

$1,035

$1,081

$1,128

$1,176

 December

Week

49

50

51

52

53

Date

December 3

December 10

December 17

December 24

December 31

Savings this week

$49

$50

$51

$52

$53

Total Savings

$1,225

$1,275

$1,326

$1,378

$1,431

Published in Blog
Monday, 09 January 2017 16:39

To Pay or Not to Pay for Kids Expenses?

My family officially has our first pets!!! We’ve have had butterflies, rolly pollies, and other insects, but on Saturday, we bought three colorful guppy fish. My four-year-old stared in wonder at the fish tanks full of many kinds of fish. For Christmas, we gave our kids gift cards to pay for their fish. I hadn’t planned on the cost of the rocks and decorations for the tank. Those ended up costing four times more than the fish! As our kids started picking out the decorations for their fishes’ home, I was not sure how much to spend or what money to use. The decorations cost $10-$40 a piece. One piece of coral, which my son wanted, cost $35. I told him that he would need to use his money if he wanted to buy that. He put it back, and we got enough decorations for the whole tank for the price of that one decoration. I decided we would use our Christmas money to pay for the decor since they were part of their Christmas gift. I learned that I should have considered and planned for the cost of accessories of the tank.

Our fish buying experience got me thinking about how we, as parents, decide what we will buy for our children and what we let our children buy. This wasn’t the first time that we had this situation come up. In fact, it comes up frequently. We could go overboard either way: make them pay for everything or buy everything for them. There is no fixed rule: every family decides what they will do. Here are a few issues that we consider:

Are my children learning how to work? If the answer is yes, I am more likely to want to pay for more of their expenses. If the answer is no, I am less likely to pay for their expenses so that they can learn to work.

Are they learning to be good stewards of money? I want to be generous to them. However, if they spend their money thoughtlessly, I don’t feel it is wise to give them money. They will never have enough money if they don’t manage it.

Are they acting entitled and bratty? Recently my oldest daughter got her money ready to pay for a field trip. I was glad that she was taking responsibility and was willing to pay for her own expenses. Because she did not act entitled, I really wanted to pay for the trip. I told her that she didn’t have to pay for it and expressed how proud I was of her. In contrast, last week my four-year-old threw a fit in the car. On the way home, we went through the Wasatch Peaks drive through to make a deposit, and she wanted a sucker. Even though it was free, I did not get her a sucker. I told her that throwing fits is not the way to get what she wants from me. If she had calmly rode in the car, I would have been more likely to get her a sucker. She learned. A couple days later, we went to the credit union again. She had been calm and obedient, and she got her sucker.

As with many aspects of parenting, for me it depends on the attitude of the child and the situation as to whether I will pay for expenses. We are learning as we go, and enjoying all that we are learning together.

What are some things that you consider before paying for expenses? What teaching moments have you had or received from your parents?

Tuesday, 03 January 2017 23:22

2017 Annual Meeting

2017 Annual Meeting Movie landing

Wasatch Peaks Credit Union announces its 2017 Annual Meeting. This year we will be offering two movie choices (movie selection subject to change due to availability). Due to limited theatre seats, RSVP is required. You may RSVP for up to 5 people.

Date: Thursday, March 2, 2017

Location: The Junction Megaplex Theatres, 2351 Kiesel Ave, Ogden, UT 84401

Check-In: 5:30 p.m. Due to limited seating, everyone will be required to check-in. Everyone will receive a ticket for a box of popcorn and drink. All Wasatch Peaks primary account holders will receive a ticket for the prize drawing.

Business Meeting: 6:00 p.m.

Prize Drawing: 6:45 p.m. All Wasatch Peaks members are eligible for the Prize Drawing. All children under 12 years old will receive a special prize. You must be present to claim your prize.

Movies: 7:00 p.m. Adults must accompany their children.

Please RSVP for the following two movie options:

The Great Wall

The Great Wall Movie

Rated PG-13, Running time: 104 minutes, Maximum Seats: 240

When a mercenary warrior (Matt Damon) is imprisoned within the Great Wall, he discovers the mystery behind one of the greatest wonders of the world. As wave after wave of marauding beasts besiege the massive structure, his quest for fortune turns into a journey toward heroism as he joins a huge army of elite warriors to confront the unimaginable and seemingly unstoppable force.

Click here to RSVP for up to five (5) adults and children over 13 years of age to watch The Great Wall Movie.

thelegobatmanmovie The LEGO® Batman Movie

Rated PG, Running time: 90 minutes, Maximum Seats: 584

WThere are big changes brewing in Gotham, but if Batman (Will Arnett) wants to save the city from the Joker's hostile takeover, he may have to drop the lone vigilante thing, try to work with others and maybe, just maybe, learn to lighten up.

Click here to RSVP for up to five (5) adults and children to watch The LEGO® Batman Movie.

 

 

Published in Membership

Get to know your candidates for the 2017 Wasatch Peaks Board of Directors Election 

There are five (5) candidates running for four (4) seats on the Board of Directors for Wasatch Peaks Credit Union. Voting instructions and ballots will be made available to members 18 years and older beginning on January 25th. Ballots must be recieved by midnight on Friday, February 24, 2017.

Nanette Combe

Nanette Combe—Candidate

Nanette has 22 years of experience working for credit unions. She has worked closely with members, employees, and board members of Wasatch Peaks Credit Union. Her most recent position was the Branch Manager of the Roy Branch.

Nanette graduated from Weber State University in 2007, receiving her Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting. Mrs. Combe is a member of Women in Business through the Ogden/Weber Chamber. She is also a lifetime member of the National Ski Patrol.

Brad Egbert

Brad Egbert—Incumbent

Brad has served on the Ogden Government Credit Union, Alliance Credit Union, and now Wasatch Peaks Credit Union Board of Directors since 1994. Mr. Egbert worked for the IRS for 11 years and the United States Postal Service for 26 years where he retired in 2009.

Currently, Brad is self-employed with his own successful tax preparation business. Mr. Egbert is a graduate of Ben Lomond High School and Weber State University. He is married with two children and enjoys golfing and relaxing at his cabin in the Uinta Mountains.

 Mike Enz

Michael E. Enz—Incumbent

Michael is a Farr West resident and Weber State University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Telecommunications Management. For 26 years he has worked at McKay-Dee Hospital where he currently manages the phone systems and cabling network for many Intermountain Health Care facilities. He is known as the “Voice of McKay Dee.”

Since 2008, Michael has served on the Board of Directors for SummitOne and Wasatch Peaks. His experience includes serving as Vice Chair and strategic planning on various committees. Mike enjoys spending time with his wife and 4 children, volunteering with the youth of his church, and has a love for the outdoors.

 Mark Ramsey

Mark Ramsey—Incumbent

Mr. Ramsey is the current Board Chair on the Wasatch Peaks Board of Directors where he has served for more than 15 years. He has also served on the Supervisory Committee of Alliance Credit Union. Mark is a lifelong resident of Weber County, graduate of Roy High School, and attended Weber State University for three years.

Mr. Ramsey has been employed by the Ogden City Police Department for 30 years and currently serves as an Investigator in the Youth Crimes Unit. Mark is married with two children. He enjoys hunting, fishing, church, and activities with his family.

 Gerald West

Gerald R. West—Incumbent

Mr. West served on the SummitOne Credit Union Board since 2004 and currently serves on the Wasatch Peaks Board. Mr. West worked in commercial banking for 22 years and served as president of Weber State Credit Union for 20 years, where he retired in 2003. He served on the boards of the Credit Union League of Utah and Corporate Central Credit Union.

Born and raised in Ogden, Gerald graduated from Weber State College and the American Institute of Banking. Mr. West is married with four children and 15 grandchildren. He enjoys family, traveling, gardening and woodworking.

 

Published in Blog
Monday, 21 November 2016 23:30

Learning from our budgeting blunders

My daughter is learning to play basketball and loves it so much. We went to her game last Saturday. Even the best basketball players miss a lot of shots. Anyone that knows me, knows I believe in budgeting. Even though I love it, my family has plenty of budgeting blunders.

$62 Dollar Shower

My husband and I met at the beginning of November and planned how we would spend our money this month. We agreed to follow the plan. Some friends invited us to join them for a date night. We didn’t have the money budgeted. I talked to Ty about it, and we decided to pass and planned to have a cheap date instead. We spent the day working outside, and by the end, I really wanted to have a shower. While I was in the shower, a girl came by raising money through selling magazines. Ty has turned down magazine subscriptions before and he often will tell the sales people that he needs to talk to his wife first. He ended up paying $62 for magazine subscriptions, which is about the amount of the date night that we had said no to because we couldn’t afford it.

Why do we sometimes spend money on things that are not important and not urgent? I don’t have an answer. Sometimes we make mistakes and have to pay for them. Ty didn’t know why he did it. At first, I felt upset about this. Then, I realized that I make mistakes, and we can learn from them. We discussed how we would pay for this one, and decided Ty would pay for this with his own spending money since there wasn’t any money for it in the family budget. I joked about how $62 is the most expensive shower I have ever had.

Busting the budget with gasoline expense

This year we bought an SUV, and the transportation budget category has been a struggle for us. We knew that we would spend more on gasoline for the SUV than we did on the van, but our gasoline expense fluctuates quite a bit based on what we are doing that month. I know people who won’t drive if there isn’t money in their gasoline category, but we will still drive to where we need to go. Even though gas is a variable expense, it seems like a fixed expense. Well, we need to solve this problem. We are going to budget money to the vacation fund so that when we go on our family day adventures, it won’t ruin our budget. We recently took a day trip to Idaho to visit Crater of the Moon and Hagerman Fossil Beds. It wasn’t a full vacation so we didn’t budget for it like we would for a vacation, but the price of driving up there was substantial enough to go over the budgeted amount in gasoline.

Holidays can be budget breaking times of the year. It’s easy to give up and wait until the new year to start again, but remember my family’s budgeting blunders. Budgets require flexibility and the ability to change and adjust.

Wasatch Peaks has some great resources to help with our budgeting blunders like the Christmas Club savings accounts to help save up for Christmas, vacations, and more. At Wasatch Peaks Credit Union, we care about your financial wellness. That’s why Wasatch Peaks partnered with industry-leading BALANCE to provide you with free access to expertly-crafted financial education and resources to help with your financial matters. And should you need, BALANCE can assist with confidential, no-cost financial counseling services to help you develop a sensible budget managing spending and debt. For all your financial life stage changes and more, Wasatch Peaks—in partnership with BALANCE—are here to help. Click here to learn more about the BALANCE Program.

Athletes who are passionate about their sport still miss a lot of shots. They learn from it, and they keep practicing and are successful no matter how many times they miss. Sometimes those mistakes are more valuable than the successes because the pain you experience helps you learn and change. What budgeting blunders have you experienced and what did you learn from them?

Monday, 24 October 2016 19:19

Planning for the holidays

My daughter, Jackie, asked me if we can rake leaves at Grandma’s house again because “she really likes to rake leaves and we don’t have any.” My kids rarely complain about not getting to work more. That’s one complaint which surprised me. One of my neighbors told Jackie that pretty soon they will have plenty of leaves for her to rake.

What do the falling leaves mean? The holidays are coming. My kid's Halloween costumes just came in the mail. They love the holidays. They spent a day making Halloween crafts and treats with my mom. Jackie asked me if we are going to make potato soup in pumpkin bread bowls. Then, before I could respond, she replied, “We have to, it’s our tradition.” It’s also a tradition to watch the Nightmare Before Christmas…Christmas!

None of us want to have a real "nightmare before Christmas." We can have an intentional holiday season by planning it out. Some years, my family has done this better than others. Here are a few suggestions that have helped me when I have followed them.

Plan your gifts

One year, I started looking for gently used toys and found some from my neighbor and some on ksl.com. My kids ended up receiving so much even though I spent so little. My kids are getting older, and my house is full of toys, so I’m searching for backpacking gear. I searched online for the brand of gear that we were considering buying. I found out that they had an outlet sale this past weekend on their gear. My husband was able to buy some gear for 60% off. The only defects were that they were stained. That didn’t bother us. Ty said that our kids would probably stain it the first time they used it anyway. The earlier I plan the gifts, the better deals I can find for them. We have bought camping gear before for Christmas and found that fall isn’t the best time to find camping gear because it’s out of season, but this year we found great deals.

Plan how much to spend

What money are you going to use for holiday spending? How much are you going to spend? I suggest you consider Christmas as a monthly bill and save throughout the year. Wasatch Peaks Credit Union offers the Christmas Club Account that allows you to save up to $300 per month and pays the 1-Year Certificate Rate. Your Christmas Club Account balance is then automatically transfered to your Savings account in October so that you can shop for Christmas! Saving for Christmas has worked great for us in the past, but this year hasn’t been ideal financially. So, yesterday my husband and I talked about what money we would use: emergency fund money (No!), money when our van sells (I like that option but can’t control the timing of the sale), or is there a third alternative. This amount changes for us. Some years, we spend very little and other years we spent a lot. I always feel better when we plan ahead. That way I don’t regret what we spent. Christmas can cost whatever you want it to cost. Plan and decide that so that you don’t overspend. That would be a Christmas nightmare.

Plan to serve

My favorite part of the holiday season is the feeling we get by giving. Sometimes, we can’t plan ahead of time how we will serve, but I like to plan on serving. Then, I look for opportunities that year of someone we can serve: a friend who has had a hard year, a neighbor who is grieving, or someone who is sick. Service opportunities come in a lot of different ways. Service is my favorite part of the Christmas season. By planning on serving, I look for ways to do it, and make sure it’s a part of our celebration.

Don’t overplan your schedule

My first 3 suggestions all started out with “Plan.” Planning helps us live purposefully, but sometimes I plan too many things. There are more options during the holiday season than we can possibly do. When I do this, I usually get sick and don’t enjoy my holidays. This year, we are going to evaluate each option and decide if that is important to us and leave some free time.

Planning can help us avoid a holiday nightmare and do those things that will help us enjoy our holiday season. Please comment on what helps you plan for the holidays.

If you’re up to your eyeballs in debt, the one thing you may wish for more than anything else is a blank slate. If you had a chance to wipe your slate clean and start over, things would be different. Of course, barring a winning lottery ticket, nothing is going to make that much of a change overnight. There is, however, another option you can take for getting your debt under control. You can use a personal loan to refinance your existing debt. That means you’ll have one monthly payment at one interest rate instead of the stress caused by a bunch of smaller bills coming due on different days of the month. Of course, this isn’t a solution for everyone. Let’s take a look at the questions you might ask yourself before you take on a debt consolidation loan.

Have I fixed the debt problem?


Think long and hard about why you’re in debt. For most people, it was a medical bill, the loss of a job or some other temporary hardship that got them behind with charges they couldn’t completely pay off right away. If that describes your situation, the fact that you have a job or have paid the medical bill means you’ve solved the problem that caused the debt in the first place. If, on the other hand, you accumulated debt by overspending on credit cards, a debt consolidation loan may not be the answer just yet. There are other steps to take first, like making a budget you can stick to, learning how to save and gaining responsibility in your use of credit. Getting a debt consolidation loan without doing those things first is a temporary solution, that might actually make matters worse in the long run. You’ll have room on credit cards again, which can make the impulse to go spend pretty strong. Give in, and you’ll be back in the same position you were before, except now you will have even more debt.

Can I commit to a repayment plan?


If you’re struggling to make minimum monthly payments on bills, a debt consolidation loan can only do so much. It’s possible that the lower interest rate will make repayment easier, but it’s also possible that bundling all of that debt together could result in a higher monthly payment over a shorter period of time. Before you speak to a loan officer, figure out how much you can afford to put toward getting out of debt. Your loan officer can work backward from there to figure out terms, interest rate and total amount borrowed. If you’re relying on a fluctuating stream of income to repay debt, like a second job or financial windfalls, it may be difficult to commit to a strict repayment plan that’s as aggressive as you like. Instead, what you can afford on a monthly basis may be nothing more than the sum of your current minimum payments. You can still make extra principal payments on a personal loan, so your strategy of making intermittent payments will still help. You just can’t figure them into your monthly payment calculation.

Is my interest rate the problem?


For some people, the biggest chunk of their debt is a student loan. These loans receive fairly generous terms, since a college degree should generally result in a higher-paying job. Debt consolidation for student loans, especially subsidized PLUS loans, may not make a great deal of sense. You’re better off negotiating the repayment structure with your lender if the monthly payments are unrealistic.
On the other hand, if you’re dealing with credit card debt, interest rate is definitely part of the problem. Credit card debt interest regularly runs in the 20% range, more than twice the average rate of personal loans. Refinancing this debt with a personal loan can save you plenty over making minimum credit card payments.

Will a personal loan cover all my debts?


The average American household has nearly $15,000 in credit card debt. That’s a big chunk of change. Add on $28,000 in auto loans, and it’s easy to see why debt is such a problem for most households. The caution with personal loans for debt consolidation is to make sure you can bundle all of that debt together. If you have more than $50,000 in credit card debt, it’s going to be difficult to put together a personal loan that can finance the entire amount. Instead, it’s worth prioritizing the highest interest cards and consolidating those instead of trying to divide your refinancing evenly between accounts. Get the biggest problems out of the way so you can focus your efforts on picking up the pieces.

Debt consolidation doesn’t work for everyone, but it can do wonders for many people. The ability to eliminate high-interest debt and simplify monthly expenses into one payment for debt servicing can change a family’s whole financial picture. The only way to know if a personal loan to consolidate debt is right for you is to sit down with a loan officer to go over your situation. Gather your account statements and your paycheck stubs and head to Wasatch Peaks Credit Union today!

What’s your secret weapon in the battle against debt? Any tips and tricks that helped you get a handle on what you owe? Let us know!

SOURCES:
https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/credit-card-data/average-credit-card-debt-household/
http://lifehacker.com/5973715/should-i-get-a-debt-consolidation-loan-to-pay-off-my-credit-cards
https://www.credible.com/blog/what-are-average-student-loan-interest-rates/
https://www.debt.org/consolidation/
https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/loans/debt-consolidation-loans/
http://www.daveramsey.com/blog/debt-consolidation-truth/

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