Which one should I pay off first?

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Everything seems to be in an utter mess……you've missed the payments on the mortgage, auto loan, furniture, washing machine, TV, and credit card. To make the matters worse, the bills are simply piling up- whether its electricity bill or a reminder letter from your telephone service provider. You are simply confused as with a limited income you have really no clue of the debts you need to pay off first. To ease your problem I have jotted down 6 important debts that must be disposed off first. They are actually the ones where serious action can be taken against you if you don't pay what you owe.

  • Mortgage – the lender can repossess your home
  • Rent arrears - Landlords usually have the right to look for a court order in case you miss to pay your rent obligations. In certain circumstances your landlord can also get you evicted without even obtaining a court order first.
  • Utility debts (like gas, electricity and telephone bills) – failure to make payments on utility services will lead to disconnection of the services by the provider.
  • Auto loan: If you require your car to get to work or for some other essential transportation, then you must place your auto loan or lease payments right next after food, housing costs, unavoidable medical expenses, and utilities.
  • Income Tax Debts: It is advisable to pay the income taxes you owe that are not automatically deducted from your wages, and you certainly must file your federal income tax return.
  • Fines: Court fines like child support or spousal maintenance are also priority debts. Non payment of these debts can make you land up in very serious problems, including prison.

Last Updated on: Sun, 20 Jan 2013

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