Warning Signs you May Have too Much Debt

Warning Signs of Debt

How much debt is too much? It can feel impossible to tell, especially since any debt can feel burdensome. But there are a few ways to tell that you have too much debt and that it’s time to do something about it.

Before you use a credit card or take out a loan, it’s important to determine if you can afford the payment. If it will put you over the edge, it’s too much. Here are some other ways to tell if you have too much debt.

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How Social Media Affects our Spending

Social Media Increases Debt

Social media is a way of life for most of us, but did you know it could affect your spending? You may not even realize the direct connection, but we’ll show you ways that you might be spending more than you intended all because of your Instagram or Facebook feeds.

Comparing Yourself

How often do you watch someone’s feed and think poorly of yourself? Maybe they have something you don’t, or you want to be just like them. What do you do?

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How Many Credit Cards Should I Have?

Credit Card Debt Solutions

There can be advantages to having more than one credit card. However, there are just as many disadvantages. Understanding the pros and cons of having more than one credit card is important to help you decide what’s right for your personal financial situation.

How More than One Credit Card can Affect You

It might seem simple. Having multiple credit cards means you can charge more and maybe even earn more rewards. While that’s true, consider these factors.

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Will I Owe Income Taxes and Have to Pay Back CERB?

Cerb and Income Taxes

If you received CERB during the pandemic, your tax liability may increase because you didn’t pay taxes at the time you received it – no one did.

Like any income, CERB is taxable, but there’s good news.

There aren’t special tax rates you must pay on any CERB you received. The tax rates are the same rates you pay on your employment income. This makes filing your taxes much less overwhelming than most people thought, but it’s still money you will owe.

How Much Tax will you Owe?

No two people will owe the same amount of taxes. Your tax rate depends on your total income and this year your total income includes all employment income plus any CERB you received. You can check your tax brackets here.

How do you Pay your CERB Tax Debt?

Like any tax debt, to figure out how much you owe, you must first file your taxes. It’s always important to file your taxes on time even if you think you can’t afford the tax debt. Get your taxes in and then take additional steps to manage the debt.

If you can’t pay your tax debt on time, contact the CRA. In most cases, they’ll offer a repayment plan or payment arrangement, but only if you ask. You must be proactive in your request, so you don’t fall behind.

Options if you can’t Pay your CERB Tax Debt

If you can’t pay your CERB tax debt, here are your options:

Apply for Taxpayer Relief

Taxpayer relief is available for those who have extenuating circumstances including unemployment, chronic illness, or a natural disaster. It has to be something outside of your control that stops you from paying the taxes.

File a Consumer Proposal

If you are in over your head in debt, you may consider a consumer proposal. This is a formal request for relief of your debts including your CERB tax debt. A proposal doesn’t eliminate the debt, but it may lower the amount you owe making it easier to afford.

Work with a Credit Counselor

If you’re in over your head in debt and now face tax debt too, get with a credit counsellor. If you free up some of your money by negotiating lower rates or consolidating debt, you may have more money available to pay your tax debt.

The key is not to ignore your debt. If you can’t pay it, work with professionals to find a way to make arrangements. Ignoring the debt only leads to more penalties and interest.

Final Thoughts

Don’t let the thought of tax debt put you over the edge. Yes, it’s another debt and if you’re already struggling it can feel like too much, but there are ways around it.

Contact our credit counselors today for your free consultation to find out how we can help make your tax debt more affordable. Sometimes it just means you need to free up some money by lowering your interest rates on other debts or negotiating other payment arrangements.

How Reducing Interest Rates Reduces Debt Faster

Pay Down Debt

Did you know that much of your debt consists of interest? This is especially true if you’ve carried balances for a long time.

For example, if you have a $10,000 balance at 20%, it will take you 60 months to pay off the debt with a $264 monthly payment and a total of $5,896 paid in interest. Your $10,000 would cost you $15,896, which is made up of 37.09% interest charges.

Reducing your interest rates can help you save money and pay your debt off faster.

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Pay Down your Debt and Put the Interest Money Toward Savings

It’s a common debate consumers face – do you pay down your debt or save money? You want to get rid of your debt, but you also need money saved for emergencies, so what do you do?

What if you could have the best of both worlds?

If you pay down your debt but continue ‘paying yourself’ the interest, you’ll get out of debt AND save money.

Here’s how!

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Pandemic Anxiety – What Should you Do?

Pandemic Financial Outcome

Canadians have many financial worries thanks to the pandemic, of which the largest issue right now is interest rates.

During the heart of the pandemic, we saw the lowest interest rates available in decades. This made it easy for millions to get in over their head in debt. Whether it’s consumer debt (credit cards) or mortgage debt, millions are wondering how they’ll make ends meet.

What caused this?

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The Top 5 Answers about Collection Agencies

Credit Counselling

You have a debt with a collection agency, but you wonder if/when they are crossing the line. What rights do they have and more importantly, what rights do you have for managing the collection?

We answer your most pressing collection agency questions below.

  1. When can a collection agency call you?

There are laws regarding how often and what time collection agencies can call you. In most provinces, they can call between the hours of 7 AM to 9 PM, but it may vary slightly by province one hour each way.

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Senior Debt Forgiveness – What you Must Know

If you’re a senior with debt, you may feel like you’re up a headed up a creek without a paddle. Living on a fixed income makes it hard to take care of anything except your daily costs of living, but fortunately, there are ways to work out your debt so you have peace of mind and can enjoy your golden years.

Here are the simple steps to take.

Figure out Where you Stand

First, get an honest look at your situation. Don’t sugarcoat it, that won’t get you anywhere. Pull out all bank statements and credit card statements. Categorize your spending and total up your debt.

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