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How to Balance Debt, Saving, and Investing

May 4 – May 17, 2023

Key Takeaways

Student loans, credit cards, and mortgages—oh my. Like many people, you may have a variety of debt. And like many people, you may be working to pay off your balances while also trying to build up some savings for a rainy day (not to mention retirement).

Trying to juggle so many competing priorities can be stressful, particularly if you’re not sure how best to focus your attentions. So we put together this step-by-step guide to try to help you decide what to tackle first.

Although we may not be able to fund your 401(k) for you or kill your student loans, hopefully we can help take some of the confusion out of the process as you work toward your goals.

Step 1: Make all your minimum payments

This could almost be "Step 0," because it should go without saying: Always make at least the minimum payment on all debts, on time. Keeping your debts in good standing is crucial to protecting your credit score. Plus, missed payments can lead to late fees and compounding interest charges, which can cause debts to quickly spiral out of control (and in extreme cases even lead to bankruptcy).

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