What To Do When Christmas Bills Come Due

There are just a few hours left to get your Christmas shopping in. What you can do to reduce your bills if you've already spent more than you planned?

Credit cards make it much easier to buy the gifts you want for your friends, your loved ones, and yourself, even if you don’t have all the cash on hand. But eventually, all those bills come due.

Gerri Detweiler is director of consumer education for

“Even if you can pay the bills off in January, your credit score could take a hit, because you start approaching those limits on your credit cards with your balance.”

There’re a couple of options for people who’ve gone overboard.

“One is to just try to try to pay off the balances as quickly as you can. If you can do it yourself in a few months, that’s great. If not, you may want to either reach out to a nonprofit credit counseling agency, or you might be able to consolidate some high-interest rate credit card debt with a low-interest rate loan.”

For a free credit report, visit

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Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media’s coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments across Greater Houston. Before taking up his current post, Andrew spent five years as Houston Public Media’s business reporter, covering the oil...

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