Credit Card Debt Is Getting More Costly: 2 Methods for Tackling Yours

What's Hot

2 Types of Black Marks Might Vanish From Your Credit File SoonBorrow

6 Ways the Obamacare Overhaul Might Impact Your WalletInsurance

7 Dumb and Costly Moves Homebuyers MakeBorrow

This Free Software Brings Old Laptops Back to LifeMore

Obamacare Replacement Plan Gets ‘F’ Rating from Consumer ReportsFamily

Beware These 12 Common Money MistakesCredit & Debt

21 Restaurants Offering Free Food Right NowSaving Money

17 Ways to Have More Fun for Less MoneySave

House Hunters: Beware of These 6 Mortgage MistakesBorrow

30 Household Uses for Baby OilSave

25 Ways to Spend Less on FoodMore

Nearly Half of Heart-Related Deaths Linked to These 10 Foods and IngredientsFamily

5 Surprising Benefits of Exercising Outdoors in WinterFamily

10 Ways to Save When You’re Making Minimum WageSave

Boost Your Credit Score Fast With These 7 MovesCredit & Debt

7 Painless Ways to Pay Off Your Mortgage Years EarlierBorrow

The Most Sinful City in the U.S. Is … (Hint: It’s Not Vegas)Family

The True Cost of Bad CreditCredit & Debt

10 Companies With the Best 401(k) PlansGrow

This Scam Now Tops ID Theft as the No. 2 Consumer ComplaintFamily

6 Stores With Awesome Reward ProgramsFamily

6 Ways to Save More at Lowe’s and The Home DepotSave

6 Healthful Treats for Your DogFamily

New Study Ranks the Best States in the U.S.Family

Thousands of Millionaires Moving to 1 Country — and Leaving AnotherGrow

Strapped for College Costs? How to Get the Most From FAFSABorrow

6 Overlooked Ways to Save at Chick-fil-AFamily

Ask Stacy: What’s the Fastest Way to Pay Off My Mortgage?Borrow

Where to Sell Your Stuff for Top DollarAround The House

8 Ways to Get a Good Price on a Shiny New AutoCars

Ask Stacy: How Do I Start Over?Credit & Debt

Secret Cell Plans: Savings Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint Don’t Want You to Know AboutFamily

30 Awesome Things to Do in RetirementCollege

14 Super Smart Ways to Save on TravelSave

The Rich Prefer Modest Cars — Should You Join Them?Cars

You’ll Soon Pay More to Shop at CostcoSave

10 Ways to Save When Your Teen Starts DrivingFamily

Continued rate hikes by the Federal Reserve mean anyone carrying credit card debt will pay more for it. Here's how to change that fate.

It might be time to give your credit cards a rest and focus on paying down balances ASAP.

Last week, the Federal Reserve System unveiled its latest interest rate hike. That move is likely to cost anyone who is carrying credit card debt.

CNBC reports that the latest increase in the Fed’s benchmark federal funds rate:

  • Collectively will cost consumers roughly $1.6 billion in extra finance charges this year alone, according to data from WalletHub.
  • Means you will pay an extra $2.50 a year for every $1,000 in debt, according to data from NerdWallet.

This news comes as Americans’ credit card debt just hit a 10-year high.

While the country’s central bank raised the federal funds rate by only 0.25 percent on March 15, the hike was the third in a span of 15 months. That’s bad news if you have credit card debt, because the effect of these hikes on such debt is cumulative.

As NerdWallet credit card expert Sean McQuay tells CNBC:

“These rates are expected to continue to rise, and each change adds up and increases your debt burden.”

There are two main ways to ease your debt burden when it comes to plastic, and ideally you’ll do both:

1. Get a lower interest rate

With a phone call or a little research, you can lower the interest rate you’re paying on credit card debt. That means the debt will cost you less in finance charges while you’re paying it off.

This can be done in three steps:

  1. Find out what rates your credit cards are charging you.
  2. Ask your current credit card companies for a lower rate. This is not guaranteed to work, but it takes only a few minutes, and the worst thing that can happen is to be turned down. However, if you have been with the same company for years, you might be pleasantly surprised. This has worked for me in the past.
  3. Look for a new credit card with a lower rate. You can compare credit cards based on their rates in the Money Talks News Solutions Center.

2. Pay off your debt faster

Paying down your credit card debt faster will also mean the debt will cost you less in finance charges in the long run.

There are many ways to do this, and you can read all about them here:

If you think you need professional help, the Solutions Center can point you in the right direction. Money Talks News has partnered with to match you with reputable experts who can develop a customized plan to help you get out of debt.

What’s your best tip for tackling credit card debt? Share it below or on Facebook.

Stacy Johnson

It's not the usual blah, blah, blah

I know... every site you visit wants you to subscribe to their newsletter. But our news and advice is actually worth reading! For 25 years, I've been making people richer without making their eyes glaze over. You'll be glad you did. I guarantee it!


Read Next: 2 Key Credit Card Trends That Will Affect You in 2017

Check Out Our Hottest Deals!

We're always adding new deals and coupons that'll save you big bucks. See the deals to the right and hundreds more in our Deals section.

Click here to explore 2,060 more deals!