Louisiana consumers frequently depend on credit cards for daily purchases. For others, their cards serve as a sort of emergency fund, giving them the ability to pay for unexpected things, such as surprise medical expenses. Cardholders may find themselves with balances they are not able to manage on their own, and they may look for ways to pay off their credit card debt or substantially lower the amount they owe.

One option for those with overwhelming credit card debt is to apply for a personal loan. A debt consolidation loan will allow a consumer to combine balances so as to be left with just one payment. This may make it easier to make timely payments each month and pay balances down. It can also save a consumer money over time depending on the interest rate associated with the consolidation loan.

For some, transferring balances to a credit card with zero interest is an attractive option. It is important to read the fine print of the agreement when applying, looking closely at annual fees, penalties and the potential for higher interest rates after a few months. It may also be helpful to talk with creditors, as some may be willing to negotiate balances or payment amounts.

Credit card debt can affect all other areas of a Louisiana consumer’s overall financial health. While there are some options to deal with these balances, the best choice may be to consider filing for bankruptcy. The Chapter 7 bankruptcy process allows for the discharge of unsecured balances, which includes credit card debt past due.