I know the question seems confusing, but this is a real life event. My friend lived beyond his means for a few years, combined with half year of unemployment his Credit Card Debt went to the roof. His credit score got a hit. When he got a job again, he put all his credit cards in good terms and he is paying off the same credit cards that once put him in a bad spot to ask for money.

Now he wants to consolidate all his CC, because some of them went to 20-24%, with a bank loan. As you can imagine there is no bank that will lend him money at least easily.

It seems that any decision he makes at this point will put him in a disadvantage point. I am sure many many Americans are struggling like this.

What to do when institutions stopped lending you money? or if they lend you is on a pretty high high interest rate?

  • Can you get some more details, and we can help you formulate an actual plan?
    – MrChrister
    Oct 3, 2010 at 1:24
  • 1
    This is a really good time to consult a professional debt counsellor - one who doesn't have any interest in selling you any kind of product or loan. Sep 6, 2011 at 20:24

5 Answers 5


It does make sense to combine debts and pay off the worst (highest interest rate). However, if you can't get any loan, you should focus on the worst debt and pay that off. Then take the same amount of money you were paying to the next worse debt, and so on until you're clean.

Let's look at an example. Debt A is at 5%, Debt B is at 10% and Debt C is at 15%. You are paying AB and C. On a monthly basis, you save 100€ to pay off C. Once C is payed off, you keep on saving 100€ and add whatever you were paying to Debt C to those savings. This way, you can pay off Debt B at an increased rate. When B is cleared, you save 100€ + whatever you were paying to Debt B and Debt C to clear Debt A.

That's the theory.


It doesn't really make sense to cure indebtedness with more debt. This is why your friend is having trouble finding someone to loan him money. If he can't borrow at a lower rate then he should probably focus on paying down some of his debt.


What to do when institutions stop lending you money, or lend at high rates?

Live within your means!

Your friend has shown financial behavior that indicates he's a bad credit risk.

If he cleans up his act, banks will lend to him at reasonable rates again. Not a whole lot he can do except build his credit again. He didn't lose it overnight, and he won't get it back overnight either.


I'd start paying off the smallest balance first. Hopefully, that can get cleared in a few months. When that happens, close the account and try to get your bank loan again. Keep repeating this process until either you pay off all of the debt.

After you've paid off one or two loans and put the negative marks of your credit history further into the past, you'll be able to make better progress.

  • 3
    I've heard (no idea if it's true) that repeatedly applying for credit and getting turned down, can lower your credit score. Can anyone confirm? If so, might not be a good idea to try repeatedly.
    – Cyclops
    Oct 2, 2010 at 18:31
  • @cyclops Yes, applying for credit and being turned down has a negative impact on your credit rating, though I believe that is on a 12-month basis. Oct 3, 2010 at 5:05
  • @GeorgeMarian Ahhh.. I figured applying for new debt every 6 months wouldn't be a problem. You think it's 12 months?
    – Alex B
    Oct 3, 2010 at 5:31
  • @alex I'm basing that on the credit report provided through a credit monitoring service provided by my bank. (Technically, provided through a vendor that the bank uses.) One of the entries is something to the effect that I had applied for credit X number of times in the past 12 months. Oct 3, 2010 at 6:29
  • @Cyclops, @GeorgeMarian: Thanks for the input. I've posted a more detailed question on how applying for credit will affect your credit score to help me gather information.
    – Alex B
    Oct 4, 2010 at 16:33

Consolidation makes sense, if your friend has his act together and isn't going to run up more debt.

Finding a lender will be tough. I'd suggest trying local credit unions, making sure first that there has been NO late or missed payments for 6-9 months. You need to talk to a human at a local lender who will give you informal guidance about what you need to approve, so you don't end up getting lots of declinations.

If its more than $10k, it will be hard to get a loan like this from anyone. In that case, you need to focus on the smallest debts first, because your friend's cash flow is going to be pinched by making payments to multiple creditors. It's critical to pay all creditors on time for at least the minimum amount due.

The problem is, once you start paying things down, the creditors will start ratcheting down credit limits. When that happens, you're at greater risk for getting nabbed with fees and higher minimum payments, which may be considered a universal default by other lenders.

There isn't alot of detail here, but depending on income and the amount of debt, your friend should be prepared to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

  • Non-institutional lenders are available for those that can't get a loan from a bank of credit union. Sites will match lenders to borrowers. The rates are better than a CC, and worse than a personal loan. I'm unaware if they have loan limits, credit checks or how collections are handled for 3rd party lenders like this, but it might give your friend the edge to catch up without resorting to filing for bankruptcy.
    – Shorlan
    Jan 10, 2019 at 22:58

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