According to a recent study by NerdWallet, 2+ in 5 Canadians have credit card debt. This is just one of many studies that shows the popularity of credit card debt in Canada.
Credit cards continue to become a major financial problem because the convenience they provide can easily become a liability if not managed properly.
High-interest rates, late fees, and other charges can make it difficult to pay off your credit card debt.
However, there are several tricks to help you pay off your credit card debt and become debt-free.
In this article, we will discuss 7+ tricks to paying off credit cards in Canada.
After reading to the end, you should be able to know the best tricks that suit your situation.
Let’s get started!
Table of Contents
1. Conduct Credit Card Statement Audit
Conducting a credit card statement audit is a crucial step toward paying off your credit cards.
The audit involves thoroughly reviewing all your credit card statements to identify any errors or fraudulent charges.
It also helps you understand how much you owe, the interest rate charged, and the minimum payment required.
By conducting a credit card statement audit, you can identify areas where you can cut back on spending and reduce unnecessary expenses.
2. Create a Budget
Creating a budget is an essential trick to paying off credit cards fast.
It allows you to track your expenses and identify areas where you can cut back on spending.
To create a budget, you need to start by listing all your sources of income and your expenses. Your expenses should include all your monthly bills, such as rent, utilities, and transportation costs, as well as your variable expenses, such as groceries, dining out, and entertainment.
Once you have listed all your expenses, you need to compare them to your income to determine how much money you have left over after paying all your bills.
This is the money you can use to pay off your credit card debt. By setting a monthly budget and sticking to it, you can avoid overspending and reduce your credit card debt over time.
3. Have a Debt Management Strategy
Having a debt management strategy is crucial when it comes to paying off credit cards in Canada.
One effective way to approach credit card debt is to choose between three popular strategies:
- Debt consolidation
The snowball method involves paying off the smallest debts first while making minimum payments on larger debts.
Once the smallest debt is paid off, the amount that was being used to pay it off is then applied to the next smallest debt.
This strategy provides a sense of accomplishment and motivation, which can help keep you on track.
The avalanche method focuses on paying off debts with the highest interest rates first, regardless of the balance owed.
By doing this, you can reduce the amount of interest you pay over time and save money in the long run.
Debt consolidation involves combining all of your debts into one loan with a lower interest rate.
This can make it easier to manage your debt and may help reduce your monthly payments.
However, it’s important to carefully consider the terms of the consolidation loan and make sure it’s a good fit for your financial situation.
Ultimately, the best debt management strategy for you will depend on your personal financial situation.
Determine which approach is best for you, consider your:
- Debt amounts,
- Interest rates, and
- monthly payments
4. Pay Above the Required Monthly Payment
Paying above the required monthly payment is a highly effective trick to paying off credit cards fast.
When you make only the minimum payment on your credit card, it can take longer to pay off your balance, as you’ll end up paying a significant amount in interest charges.
By paying more than the minimum amount, you can reduce the amount of interest charged, pay off your balance faster, and ultimately save money.
When applying this trick, ensure you communicate with your credit card company to ensure that your additional payments are being applied toward the principal balance and not just the interest charges.
5. Stop Taking More Credit
Another effective trick to paying off credit cards fast in Canada is to stop taking on more credit.
Applying for new credit can make it difficult to pay off existing balances. This is because additional credit means more debt and interest charges, which can quickly become overwhelming.
Taking on more credit and not making the required payment can negatively impact your credit score, making it more challenging to obtain credit in the future, such as when applying for a mortgage or car loan.
By stopping yourself from taking on more credit, you can focus on paying off your current credit card balances and achieving financial freedom.
6. Suspend Investing or Large Purchases
Yes, you may need to subs to suspend investing or large purchases to focus on paying off your credit card debt.
This means that you should put a hold on any non-essential expenses that require you to use your credit card or take money out of your bank account.
No doubt, investing is important for building your financial future, but paying off high-interest credit card debt should take priority.
If you continue to invest while carrying credit card debt, the interest you pay on your cards will most likely outweigh the returns on your investments. Therefore, it is better to suspend investing until your credit card debt is paid off.
Similarly, large purchases should also be put on hold until you have paid off your credit card debt.
The aim is to channel your energy is eliminating your credit card. By making large purchases while having high-interest debt, you may be incurring more debt.
If you make large purchases on your credit card while carrying a balance, you will be charged high-interest rates on the unpaid balance, which will only increase your debt load.
Once your debt is paid off, you can resume investing and making large purchases with a clear mind and a healthy financial outlook.
7. Improve Your Income
Improving your income can be a powerful tool in paying off credit card debt fast in Canada.
Increasing your income can be achieved through various methods such as getting a second job, freelancing, selling items you no longer need, or asking for a raise at your current job.
The additional income can be used to pay off your credit card debt, reducing the interest you will be charged, and ultimately lowering the amount you owe.
It can also prevent you from accruing more debt, as you will have more money to cover your expenses.
However, it is important to ensure that the extra income is not just used to cover your current expenses, but rather put towards your credit card debt.
You can do this by creating a budget that outlines how much of your additional income will be allocated toward debt repayment.
Improving your income can also have long-term benefits, such as increasing your savings, building an emergency fund, and improving your credit score. This can make it easier for you to access credit in the future, with more favorable terms and interest rates.
Below are some relevant articles on how to improve your income:
- 15 Legit Ways to Make Money Fast in Canada
- 15 Legit Side Hustles That Pay Weekly
- 12 Best Passive Income Ideas in Canada
- 10 Best Online Part-Time Jobs in Canada
Last Option: Credit Card Debt Bankruptcy
Let me first make it clear that you shouldn’t consider credit card debt bankruptcy as a trick or a strategy to pay off credit cards in Canada.
This should be the last option when you have exhausted all other options as prioritizing it can have long-term consequences on your credit score and financial well-being.
When you declare bankruptcy, you may be required to forfeit your non-exempt assets, and the record will stay on your credit report for 6-7 years. This will make it difficult for you to get approved for loans, credit cards, or even rental applications.
So before considering bankruptcy, make sure you have tried all other options to pay off your credit card debt.
If possible, seek advice from a financial advisor or credit counselor to help you make an informed decision about the best option for you.
- 8 Proven Ways on How to Get Out of Debt in Canada Faster
- How to Increase Your Credit Score Fast in Canada
- Best Credit Cards in Canada
- Low-Rate vs Low-Fee Credit Card: Which to Choose?
Paying off credit card debt can be a daunting task as it requires commitment, discipline, and a willingness to make changes to one’s spending habits.
But with the right strategies, paying off your credit card debt can become a reality.
The tricks discussed in this article can help you pay off credit card debt faster and more efficiently.
However, it is important to remember that there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to paying off credit cards.
Different strategies may work better for different people depending on their financial situation and priorities.
As such, it is crucial to choose a method that works best for your circumstance and to remain disciplined in following through with the plan.
All the best in your debt payment!
For more relevant financial tricks, visit our blog section.