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My Credit Card is Maxed Out – What Can I Do?

A maxed out credit card makes life more difficult and stressful. Therefore you need to figure out a plan on how to pay it off. We are going to discuss how to develop a plan and help with your maxed out credit card.

Stop Spending

The first thing you need to do is to stop spending! This is very important so you don't keep adding to your debt. Don't buy unnecessary items. Take you credit cards out of your wallet so you're not tempted to pull it out at the store.

Another way to protect yourself from using your credit card is cut it up and put it in some water and freeze it. Either way you won't be able to use it to purchase anything quickly. If you freeze it, then you will have to wait for it to de-thaw. During that time process, you should really think whether you need that item.

Create a Plan/Budget

After you stop spending on unnecessary items, sit down and create a plan and budget. Write down all your expenses and sort them by fixed expenses and variable expenses. You know your fixed expenses are things such as mortgage or rent, car payments, utilities, etc. Then document all of your variable expenses such as gas, groceries, restaurants, etc.

Next you need to take your income and budget it out for each of these expenses. Now that you have a budget created, see if you have any money left or if you have over budgeted your income.

If you have extra money, then all of that should be put towards either creating a savings account or paying off your credit cards. It's important to create a savings account, if you already don't have one. This extra money will help you if something unplanned for develops. It may seem difficult to put money into savings while you still have a lot of credit card debt but it's important.

Take a small amount of what is left from your budget and place it in a savings account. The rest of it should be used to pay off your credit cards.

If you have over-budgeted your income, then you need to look carefully at each of your expenses and see where you can cut back. This is important to do, whether you have over-budgeted yourself or not. Can you stop eating out three times a week and eat out once a week instead?

What about taking your lunch to work, so you're not buying lunch every day? You can also use coupons for your groceries so you don't spend as much. Maybe you need to cut back on shopping for clothes or electronics. These are just a few examples of ways you can cut back. You need to cut back to where you can pay all your fixed and variable expenses and then have some left over to pay off credit cards and put into your savings account.

Balance Transfer Offers

Rates last updated July 23rd, 2018
Name Product Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee Product Description
Westpac Low Rate Card
13.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 24 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($59 p.a. thereafter)
Offers a 0% for 24 month balance transfer option, first year annual fee waiver and a competitive purchase rate.
Citi Clear Platinum - Exclusive Offer
14.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 24 months with 1.5% balance transfer fee
$49 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
finder Exclusive: Receive 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers and a discounted annual fee in the first year. Plus, access to Citi World Privileges.
NAB Low Fee Platinum Card - Exclusive Amazon Offer
19.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 24 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$90 p.a.
finder Exclusive: 10% cashback with amazon.com.au for 12 months (capped at $25 per month). Plus, 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 24 months.
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 22 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter)
Offers a 0% p.a. for 22 months balance transfer, $0 annual fee for the first year and an annual fee refund each year when you spend $6,000.
St.George Vertigo Platinum - Online Offer
12.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 24 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
Platinum card benefits including complimentary insurance, plus first year annual fee waiver and 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers.
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Bonus Points Offer
20.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months
$64 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter)
Earn up to 60,000 bonus Velocity Points in the first 3 months and enjoy a discounted annual fee of $64 for the first year.
HSBC Low Rate Credit Card
13.25% p.a.
0% p.a. for 20 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$79 p.a.
Receive up to 20 months interest-free on balance transfers with a 2% BT fee. Also enjoy exclusive offers with the home&Away Privilege Program.
Citi Simplicity Card
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 15 months with 1.5% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a.
Save with 5% cashback on eligible purchases (capped at $50 per month) for the first 90 days from approval. Plus, a 15 month balance transfer offer.
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
20.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months
$64 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter)
Take advantage of 0% p.a. on balance transfers for up to 18 months. $64 in the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter), plus, bonus Velocity Points.
NAB Low Fee Card
19.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$30 p.a.
Receive complimentary purchase protection insurance, a 18 month balance transfer offer and special offers from Visa Entertainment.
Virgin Money Low Rate Credit Card
11.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 14 months
$49 p.a.
Offers a $49 annual fee, up to $100 cashback when you make a purchase within 3 months and 0% p.a. for 14 months on balance transfers.
Citi Platinum Credit Card - 100k Bonus Points
20.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 15 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$49 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
Earn 100,000 reward Points, enjoy a long-term balance transfer offer, a discounted first year annual fee and complimentary travel insurance.
BankSA Amplify Card
19.49% p.a.
3% p.a. for 36 months
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($79 p.a. thereafter)
Receive a 3% p.a. for 36 months balance transfer and earn Qantas or Amplify Points per $1 spent. Plus, enjoy a $0 annual fee for the first year.
BankSA Vertigo Visa
13.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$55 p.a.
Enjoy a 0% p.a. for 18 months balance transfer offer. Plus, up to 55 days interest-free on purchases.
St.George Vertigo Visa
13.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$55 p.a.
Enjoy a 0% p.a. for 18 months balance transfer offer. Plus, up to 55 days interest-free on purchases.
Bank of Melbourne Vertigo Platinum
12.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 24 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$99 p.a.
Offers a long-term balance transfer, low ongoing purchase rate, complimentary travel insurance and access to a 24/7 personal concierge service.
St.George Amplify Card
19.49% p.a.
3% p.a. for 36 months
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($79 p.a. thereafter)
Take advantage of 3% p.a. interest on balance transfers for 36 months. Plus, a $0 first year annual fee and Amplify or Qantas Points per $1 spent.
NAB Low Rate Platinum Card
0% p.a. for 9 months (reverts to 13.99% p.a.)
0% p.a. for 6 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$100 p.a.
Enjoy a 0% p.a. interest rate offer on purchases for 9 months and the protection of 7 complimentary insurances including overseas travel insurance.
American Express Velocity Escape Card
20.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a.
Earn uncapped Velocity Points on purchases, pay $0 annual fee for life and take advantage of a 0% p.a. for 12 months balance transfer offer.
American Express Explorer Credit Card
20.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$395 p.a.
Receive 50,000 bonus Membership Rewards points, a yearly $400 Travel Credit and 2 entries per year to the American Express Lounge.

Compare up to 4 providers

Perform a balance transfer to a new credit card

If you have a high interest rate, it is sometimes hard to pay more than the minimum balance. Look to see if there is another card with a lower interest rate. Once you find a credit card with a lower interest rate, see if that credit card company will allow you to transfer your balance. Sometimes there will be promotional rates which only last for a certain amount of time and then are raised to a much higher interest rate. Watch out for these and try to pay it off before the promotion ends.

While having a maxed out credit card is no fun, it is possible to get out debt. But it's important that you start immediately by not spending any more money and creating a plan and budget. These two things are essential in your quest to pay off your debt. You can pay off your debt, sometimes it just takes time, but it is possible.

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Credit Card Offers

Important Information*
Citi Clear Platinum - Exclusive Offer
Citi Clear Platinum - Exclusive Offer

Interest rate

14.99

Annual fee

99
Qantas Premier Everyday
Qantas Premier Everyday

Interest rate

19.99

Annual fee

49

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