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A debt consolidation loan enables you to roll all of your outstanding debts into a single, manageable balance with just one monthly payment. Utilizing a debt consolidation loan might lower your overall interest rate and hasten the repayment of your debt. 

Having only one monthly bill to factor into your budget might also make debt repayment easier. Debt consolidation loan availability and rate of interest mostly depend on your personal credit score; the higher your score, the more alternatives you have and the less interest you’ll pay.

Additionally, depending on your credit history, a debt consolidation loan may help you raise your credit score by establishing a broad credit mix, demonstrating your ability to make on-time payments each month, and lowering your overall debt.

How do debt consolidation loans work? 

It is relatively easy to consolidate debt using a personal loan. Most debt consolidation loans are installment loans with a fixed interest rate, which means your interest rate will remain stable throughout the loan term, making your repayments a fixed amount each month. 

To start with, figure out how much debt you want to consolidate. Total the unpaid sums on all of your high-interest accounts and credit cards.

Then, look up your rate on a personal loan with a fixed rate. As you compare personal loan options, make sure you are aware of the rates and terms of your new loan and that you really are able to afford the new monthly payment. Pick the deal that most closely matches your requirements.

Use your new loan to pay off your debts with hefty interest rates. You’ll only have one loan now, and you’ll only have to make one set monthly payment each month rather than owing money on several accounts and making various payments each month.

A debt consolidation loan enables you to roll all of your outstanding debts into a single, manageable balance with just one monthly payment.

How does a debt consolidation loan affect credit score?

Your credit scores may be impacted by a debt consolidation loan in a number of positive and negative ways.

Credit utilization percentage

The percentage of your available revolving credit that you are utilizing, or your credit usage ratio, is expressed as a percentage. The key to keeping a high credit score is to keep this percentage for each of your credit cards below 30%.

Utilization decreases to 0% when credit cards are paid off using consolidation loans, a type of installment credit that doesn’t affect your ratio and can improve your credit score.

Payment history

Your credit score might gradually increase if you pay your loans off on time each month. Your credit score might be severely impacted if you miss a payment by 30 days or more.

Accounts’ average age

Your credit history’s length is impacted by the average age of your accounts, which decreases each time you open a new credit account.

A hard credit check

The lender will make a hard inquiry into your credit history each time you apply for a loan in order to check your credit reports.

Pros and cons of a debt consolidation loan

Pros of Debt Consolidation Loans Cons of Debt Consolidation Loans
The possibility of reduced interest rates, particularly if you have the credit score to combine high-interest loans into one with more favorable conditions. To get a decent rate, one might need to have strong credit.
Making only one payment will simplify financial management. You may still have access to revolving accounts like credit cards even after they have been paid off, giving you the chance to accrue debt on top of what you already have.
It’s possible that your debt could be paid off more slowly, which would make your monthly payments easier to handle. If you have to close a lot of other accounts, it could hurt your credit score in the short term.
Many debt consolidation loans are fixed installment loans, which means you’ll know exactly when you’ll be debt-free. Depending on your credit score, debt-to-income ratio and loan amount, you might pay a higher interest rate than you would on the original debt.

When debt consolidation may be a wise choice for you?

  • Your credit score is already very good: Applicants with all levels of credit are eligible for personal loans. But you will often require at least a fair credit score if you want favorable conditions and a cheap interest rate. 
  • You have high-interest debt: Consolidating your debt may enable you to reduce your interest payments if you’re eligible for a lower rate than what you’re currently paying.

When Debt Consolidation May Not Be the Best Option? 

  • There are no plans for you to alter your spending patterns: Due to the fact that it releases available credit on your credit card, a consolidation loan may be enticing. However, transferring the debt and then adding to it on the cards you just paid off might put you in an even worse financial condition.
  • You have very poor credit: A personal loan with bad or no credit can still be accepted, to reiterate. But you might end up with a higher interest rate, which could increase your costs and make it hard for you to make the monthly payments.
  • You’re not indebted heavily: The benefits of a debt consolidation loan might not be worth the time spent looking around, comparing options, and applying if you believe you can pay off your credit card and other debt in the next six to twelve months.