Consoladating bills

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For those families, there are a number of methods to consolidate medical debt.

Not all are equally attractive, and it is important to consider all aspects of the situation before committing to a plan for repayment. This involves a bank or other lender reviewing your financial situation, including employment status, how timely you have paid bills in the past, your credit rating, and more.

Consolidating the two into a new, 15-year mortgage at 4.5 percent costs more per month, but less over the life of the loan.

A ,000 credit card balance at 16 percent interest plus a 0,000 mortgage at 4.5 percent interest rack up 0,936 in interest payments over the life of the loans.

Consumers can use debt consolidation as a tool to deal with student loan debt, credit card debt and other types of debt.

There are several ways consumers can lump debts into a single payment.

You may be tempted to consolidate your credit card and other high-interest debt into a mortgage with much lower payments. Lenders now require the homeowner to keep at least 15 percent to 20 percent equity after cashing out.

Today's debt consolidation mortgages are more conservative than those seen during the housing boom, when lenders allowed homeowners to refinance and cash out as much as 110 percent of the value of their homes.

Consolidating the two into a 15-year mortgage at 4.5 percent saves almost 0,000 more.If the lender decides to proceed, they will provide you with a loan that can be used to pay off your existing bills at each health care provider.The key is to ensure that the new loan has a lower interest rate than your existing debts.Those with enough equity in their homes have been able to substantially reduce the monthly payments on credit card debt, student loans and personal loans, says Michael Moskowitz, president of Equity Now, a mortgage bank in New York City."I wouldn't recommend it to someone who is going to run up their credit cards again," he says."If that's the case, you need financial counseling, but for people who will not do that -- who had medical expenses, business expenses and ran up their credit cards -- a debt consolidation mortgage is a good solution."He cites the case of a client who had a mortgage-free investment house and more than ,000 in credit card debt.

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