4 Ways to Get out of Debt

Paying off debt can feel daunting, but it’s achievable when you make a plan.

Ciara Corley of the Regions Next Step Project* explains how she created a financial game plan to pay down credit card debt and student loans and save for her future financial goals, like earning her PhD.

1. Determine a financial action plan. To get debt under control, work with a banker to assess a debt repayment plan. Set short- and long-term goals, and create a plan of action. “When I talk to my students about reaching their goals, I always tell them first you have to identify your goal, and once you identify your goal, you need to write down the steps to how you are going to make that goal achievable,” says Ciara.

2. Make bi-weekly debt payments. If your budget allows, pay bills like student loans and credit card debt twice a month to help reduce the loan’s accrued interest and pay off your debt faster. “I've been able to successfully pay down $2,000 of my student loans in less than a year, so I'm really happy about that,” Ciara says. To ensure you benefit from this strategy, talk to your banker to make sure all partial payments will be applied to your loan. If your financial institution doesn’t allocate partial payments right away — and, instead, holds the funds until your next scheduled payment — you could also inquire about making principal-only payments to pay down your loan quicker.

3. Set up automatic bill pay. Make sure your monthly expenses are paid on time by scheduling automatic payments every month. It helps ensure your payment is made on time to avoid late fees.

4. Keep tabs on your progress with mobile banking. To stay on track with paying off your debt, monitor your budget using your mobile banking app. You can also set up mobile alerts to prevent overspending. Ciara says these features are helpful— especially while traveling: “to check finances and make sure I’m not going over.”

Learn more about Ciara’s Next Step journey with Regions.

*Paid appearance by actual Regions customers telling their real story.


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This information is general in nature and is provided for educational purposes only. Regions makes no representations as to the accuracy, completeness, timeliness, suitability, or validity of any information presented. Information provided should not be relied on or interpreted as accounting, financial planning, investment, legal, or tax advice. Regions encourages you to consult a professional for advice applicable to your specific situation. Regions neither endorses nor guarantees any websites or companies referenced in this article that are not owned by Regions.