Credit Card Payoff Calculator
Find the right fixed monthly payments to fit your budget and pay off your debt fast!
Our credit card payoff calculator can help in your efforts to become debt free. If you can’t afford to pay off your credit card balance in full every month, using credit may not be the right choice for you. However, many of us don’t have the extra money to go beyond a minimum monthly payment.
A high annual interest rate can negate the benefits of the products and services you get from the card issuer. Financial institutions try to hook with incentives, expecting you to struggle with the minimum payment amount. This can make it hard to pay off your balance, and ultimately lead to low credit scores.
Start Your Debt Repayment Plan Now
All you have to do is plug in the numbers. Enter your credit card balance first. Then, input your annual percentage rate. That, and your percentage of balance are on your statement or initial credit agreement. Most times, it’s three. Lastly, determine whether you want to pay the minimum or fixed payments. Keep in mind, you can go between the two to see the different effects take on your choices.
Once you calculate your numbers, you can see the advantage of paying a fixed rate instead of the minimum. You can also view a payment schedule. If you chose minimum payment, you could see how much you’ll end up paying in interest, as well as alternatives. The most common options you may see include:
- Debt Management Plan
- Debt consolidation
The above options can mimic the effect of making fixed payments. However, you may suffer from poor credit scores and have to pay a fee for the services.
Your best bet: paying a little more than the minimum every month to reduce interest costs and time in debt.
If you carry credit card balances over every month, you could benefit from making fixed payments until you pay off the debt. Instead of following the minimum payment schedule, which isn’t designed to pay off debt efficiently, you find a fixed amount that works for your budget. That way, you can pay off credit card balances as quickly as possible to eliminate your debt fast. This free fixed payment calculator can help you find the right payments to meet your needs.
How long should it take to pay off my debt?
Ideally, you should be able to eliminate a balance in full within one year of making fixed payments. If you have more than one balance to eliminate, then you should be able to pay them all off within 3-5 years. If you can’t find a payment that works for your budget to do that, then you need debt relief.
Debt relief options provide faster, more efficient ways to repay your debt. You can consolidate the debt at a lower interest rate or go through credit counselling. In either case, the goal is to reduce or eliminate interest charges so you can pay off debt as quickly as possible.
This can be beneficial over trying to pay off debt with fixed payments. That’s because even with larger fixed payments, you still throw money away on accrued monthly interest charges. At 15% or even 20% APR, a big portion of every payment you make gets used to cover interest charges. As a result, it takes more money and time to pay off your debt.
If you’re making fixed payments, call your creditors to negotiate!
If you’d rather just stick with traditional payments, you should at least take the step of calling your creditor to negotiate a lower interest rate. Most creditors are willing to work with customers and lower the APR on their account. This is especially true if you’re a loyal customer that always pays your bills on time. You also have a good case for lower APR if your credit score has improved since you opened the account.
By lowering the APR, it means that more of each monthly payment you make goes to eliminate the principal. That’s the actual debt you owe – By paying off your balance in full and on time, your credit will improve too! . Lowering your interest rate is and more cost-efficient. It’s worth the call to your credit card’s customer service department to try and negotiate.
If you have more than one balance, you have to prioritize
If you have multiple balances to repay, it’s best to focus on one at a time. Each balance you eliminate takes one bill off your plate. This is better than ending up with several $15 or $25 minimum charges.
There are two ways to set up a debt reduction plan.
- You can pay off the balance with the highest APR first to help save money
- You can pay off the lowest balance amount first to start eliminating bills quickly
The first option is more cost effective if you have the funds available to do it. Higher APR means higher monthly interest charges. In other words, a $1,000 debt at 22% APR costs more to pay off than a $1,000 debt at 15% APR. It also takes longer to eliminate.
However, if you have limited funds for making fixed payments, starting with the lowest balance first can help you build momentum. The idea here is to start small, eliminate these bills first, freeing up more funds to tackle your biggest debts.