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The Complete Idiot's Concise Guide to Getting Out of Debt

Book Description

Learn great tips on how to get out debt as well as the financial pitfalls that lead to such issues.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright
  4. Contents
  5. 1 Controlling Your Cash Flow
    1. Discretionary Income Is the Key
    2. The Formula for Discretionary Income
    3. Fixed vs. Variable Expenses
    4. Ways to Increase Discretionary Income
    5. Twelve Ideas for Increasing Income
    6. Twelve Ideas for Decreasing Fixed Expenses
    7. Twelve Ideas for Decreasing Variable Expenses
  6. 2 How to Make a Budget
    1. The Purpose of a Budget
    2. What a Budget Is—and Isn’t
    3. The Basic Ingredients of Any Budget
    4. The Three Types of Budgets
    5. The Ideal Budget
    6. The Actual Budget
    7. The Compromise Budget
    8. Time to Do Your Budget!
    9. Avoiding Budgeting Pitfalls
    10. The Least You Need to Know
  7. 3 Creating a Payment Strategy
    1. As Much as You Can, as Soon as You Can
    2. Use the Roll-Down Method
    3. Debt Elimination: The Ugly, the Bad, and the Good
    4. The Ugly: Debts to Eliminate ASAP
    5. The Bad: Debts to Get Rid of Sooner Than Later
    6. The Good: Debts to Get Rid of Last
    7. Where to Put That Extra Cash
    8. The Highest-Interest-Rate Debts
    9. The Debts with the Smallest Balances
    10. The Largest Balances
    11. The Debts That Affect Your Credit Score Most
    12. Accounts That You Plan on Closing
    13. Those with Nondeductible Interest
    14. The Most Stressful Debts
    15. Changing Your Strategy Midway
  8. 4 Credit Card Strategies
    1. The Trick to Paying Off Credit Cards
    2. Stop Using Your Credit Card for Day-to-Day Expenditures
    3. Keep the Credit Cards out of Your Wallet
    4. So That Means I Should Cancel All My Credit Cards?
    5. Silver Bullets for Reducing Your Credit Card Balances
    6. Negotiate a Lower Rate
    7. Transfer Your Balance to Another Card
    8. Use Your Home Equity to Pay It Off
    9. Consider Balance Reduction and Debt Settlement
    10. Consolidate Your Credit Cards
    11. Use Your Credit Insurance
  9. 5 Mortgage Strategies
    1. Getting to Know Your Mortgage
    2. “What If” #1: Interest Rates Adjust
    3. “What If” #2: Balloon Payment Is Coming Due
    4. “What If” #3: Your Principal Isn’t Shrinking
    5. Refinancing: A Bad Mortgage’s Best Friend
    6. Refinancing an Adjustable Rate to a Fixed Rate
    7. Refinancing a Shorter Term to a Longer Term
    8. Refinancing an Interest Only or NegAm to a Fixed
    9. Refinancing a HELOC into a Fixed Mortgage
    10. Knowing When to Refinance
    11. Origination, Points, and Closing Costs…Oh My!
    12. Choosing a Lender You Can Trust
    13. When You Can’t Refinance
    14. Foreclosure: The Final Frontier
    15. Strategies for Not So Rainy Days
    16. The Biweekly Payment
    17. PMI: Insurance You Don’t Need
  10. 6 Strategies for Other Types of Debt
    1. Payday Loans
    2. Breaking the Payday Loan Cycle
    3. Getting Help with Food Costs
    4. Car Loan Strategies
    5. Pay More Than the Minimum
    6. Refinance Your Auto Loan
    7. Pay Off Your Car with a HELOC
    8. Other Expenses
    9. Curing Your Medical Bills
    10. Settling Legal Debts
    11. Dealing with Alimony and Child Support
    12. Standing Up to the IRS
    13. Installment Agreements and Offers in Compromise
  11. 7 Getting Your Creditors Off Your Back
    1. Understanding Your Creditors
    2. Your Rights Under the Consumer Credit Protection Act
    3. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)
    4. The Fair Credit Billing Act (FCBA)
    5. Restriction on Garnishment Act
    6. Truth in Lending Act (TILA)
    7. Predatory Lending Laws
    8. Usury Laws
    9. Face-to-Face Encounters
    10. Important Steps in an Auto Repossession
    11. Important Steps in an Eviction
    12. Important Steps to Keep Your Utilities On
    13. Reporting Violations of Your Rights