Before You Retire Understand The Warning Signs Of Financial Problems

2011-09-30   minute read

Many retired Canadians are finding it increasingly difficult to meet their basic monthly living expenses from one month to the next. The income received from the government pensions and possibly a pension from a previous employer is very often quite limited. With the rising costs of rent, groceries, gasoline and other basics it may often result in the consumer relying on credit to help make ends meet. Over time the debt level increases, the credit card limits are reached and the consumer can no longer maintain all expenses and debts. Taking the time to review your finances is the first step to getting back the control. Take a look at the income received each month and compare this to the total housing expenses and monthly debt payments. Pull out the credit card statements and take a look at the interest charged each month. Consider how many years it will take to pay off the debt if you only make minimum payments. The credit card statements provide this information and for many it can be quite shocking to see the results. Consider the list below which has some of the most common warning signs of financial problems:Are you afraid to answer the phone as it may be a creditor or collection agency calling?Are you using credit to buy necessities such as groceries and gasoline?Are you only making the minimum payments as you cannot afford to pay off the full balance?Are you borrowing money from family and friends?Are you juggling payments?Are you using credit cards to pay another credit card?Are financial problems affecting your health? If you answered yes to any of the above questions you should not ignore your financial situation any longer. Take the time to investigate your options.Are Smaller Monthly Payments Possible? For some individuals they may be in the financial position to offer the creditors a Consumer Proposal whereby they offer the unsecured creditors a monthly payment with payments made over a period of one to five years. Assuming the majority of unsecured creditors accept it, it will become binding on all unsecured creditors. The advantage to the consumer is smaller monthly payments which fit into the budget and the creditors are being paid. To file a consumer proposal the consumer will be required to meet with aLicensed Trustee of a bankruptcy firm.What to Do When Income Is Limited? If the income level is limited and there isn’t money left to offer the creditors a payment, the bankruptcy option may be the solution you need to consider. Although it can be difficult to accept the fact that you need to go this route, the bankruptcy can provide the relief the consumer needs to resolve the financial problems and be able to get on with living. To file an assignment into bankruptcy, the consumer will be required to meet with aLicensed Trustee of a bankruptcy firm.

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