Archive December 2014

Would you Pay Off Credit Cards with a HELoC?

Y’all have seen the ads: some smiling beautiful person is trying to tell the world how much easier their life is since they “paid off” their credit card bills by using their HELoC (Home Equity Line of Credit).  It might have been on TV, in the newspaper, on the radio, or even online.  It’s touted as the “smart” thing to do.  There is so much wrong with this idea, I am not even sure where to begin!

First, let’s tackle the erroneous notion that you can “pay off” debt by borrowing (more debt).  Yes, a HELoC is borrowing…it’s borrowing against the equity of your HOME.  Dave Ramsey has a cute but very true saying: “You can’t borrow your way out of debt.”  He is 100% right on that point.

Now let’s look at the (lack of) wisdom in this strategy: The notion that taking unsecured credit card debt and moving it to a secured debt situation is “smart”.  Credit card companies will scream, holler, and cry blue murder if you don’t pay them …

Trust me I have had personal experience with this … but the worst they can do is ding up your credit report (and score) then discharge the debt and sell it to a collection agency who usually has as bad or worse phone tactics.

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