These are not quick fixes, but rather long-term financial strategies to help you get out of debt.

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— and what the monthly payment and interest rates are on those bills. Once you have this information, make sure to compare lender’s rates, fees and length of time making payments before making a decision.

A consolidation loan should reduce your interest rate, lower your monthly payment, and give you a practical way to eliminate debt.

You could get a home equity line of credit, a home equity loan or a second mortgage on your home, or refinance your existing mortgage.

Other options include borrowing against a whole life insurance policy and borrowing against you retirement savings.

With bill consolidation, you make only one monthly payment — a good idea for when you have five, or maybe even 10 separate payments for credit cards, utilities, phone service, etc.

If you consolidate all bills into one, the single payment should be at a lower interest rate and reduced monthly payment.

That's where debt consolidation and other financial options come in.

Consolidate Your Debt Now Debt consolidation is combining several unsecured debts — credit cards, medical bills, personal loans, payday loans, etc. Instead of having to write checks to 5–10 creditors every month, you consolidate bills into one payment, and write one check.

All payments made during that time will go toward reducing your balance.