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I have about $50K+ in credit card debt and am paying anywhere from 0% to 20% on it, depending on the card.

How much can an unsecured consolidation loan lower my rate, assuming I can get one at all?

Will the lender pay the credit card companies directly, and ask me to close my credit card accounts?

What's a good place to apply for such loans? Is there a meta-site to apply for such loans? I'm not crazy about such meta-sites, but it seems the best way to get the lowest interest rate.

  • Don't close your credit card accounts, just cut up the cards and never use the accounts again. Closing them will further damage your credit score. – Matthew Read Dec 12 '10 at 18:06
  • I'm asking if the lender will require me to close my accounts to protect their loan. I'd prefer not to close the cards myself. – barrycarter Dec 12 '10 at 18:11
  • For what it's worth, CitiFinancial offered me a $6K unsecured loan for 36% (I declined). – barrycarter Jan 18 '11 at 18:54
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$50k is a big unsecured loan -- not sure where you'll find someone willing to do that.

I'd say your best bet is to start paying down the smallest accounts, regardless of rate, to free up cash flow. Having paid off credit lines will help you maintain an ok debt to credit line ratio.

As far as consolidation loans, I would try to find a lender that will let you swap high interest loans with lower interest loans in the 9-14% range, my guess is that you'll get no more than $10k. You'll probably want to start talking to local credit unions and small banks and find out what products they have to help you.

It's critical to stay current with all accounts, as things will spiral out of control once you default -- the other banks will start cutting your credit lines and hitting you with overlimit fees and interest rate hikes.

  • I tried to get a $20k unsecured loan a couple years ago, and my bank gave me $15k 4 year loan at 17.75% interest. So it's possible to get greater than $10k, but the interest rate goes up significantly. It will be paid off in two years. – Brian Aug 6 '14 at 17:25
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I agree that it would be shocking for you to get an unsecured loan to cover the full amount. If you could I would suspect the rate is pretty high. If you are serious about ending your debt, I would suggest just paying off what you already have.

You can do a debt snowball or attack it by anything that makes you comfortable.

Either way, just pay off the accounts. That is preferable to getting another loan. I know that isn't what you asked, but I think it is the best answer.

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