Debt Consolidation Calculator – NerdWallet

The debt consolidation calculator below can help you decide if debt consolidation is right for you. The calculator will suggest the best way to consolidate your debt and estimate your savings with a debt consolidation loan.

Debt Consolidation Calculator

How to use the debt consolidation calculator

Step 1: Enter the balances, interest rates, and monthly payments you currently make for your unsecured debt, such as credit cards, personal loans, and payday loans.

Click “I’m done” and look at the calculator results, based on the numbers you entered:

  • Total balance: The sum of all your debts or what you owe in total.

  • Combined interest rate: Your weighted average interest rate for all the debts you entered into the calculator.

  • Total monthly payment: The amount you pay monthly for these debts, including interest.

  • When you are debt free: The length of time until you are no longer in debt, based on your current balance and monthly payments.

2nd step: Choose your credit score range to see your debt consolidation options, including personal loans. You will see typical annual percentage rate ranges offered by lenders, as well as alternative options for bad credit.

Lenders who offer direct payment to creditors send your loan proceeds directly to your creditors, simplifying the debt repayment process.

Drag the sliders below the table to enter an estimated rate and your desired loan term (in years) for the new loan.

Step 3: Look at the comparison between your current debts and the new debt consolidation loan.

Debt consolidation really makes sense when your new total payment is less than your current total payment and you save on interest charges.

What is debt consolidation?

Debt consolidation consolidates your existing debts into one, ideally with a lower interest rate and shorter repayment term, saving you money and time until repayment. This is often accomplished with a debt consolidation loan, but there are other ways to consolidate debt depending on your particular situation.

Ways to consolidate debt

  1. Debt Consolidation Loan: These loans, typically from an online lender, credit union, or bank, provide a large amount of money to pay off multiple debts, leaving you with just one monthly payment.

  2. Balance Transfer Credit Card: This option transfers credit card debt to a balance transfer credit card that charges no interest for a promotional period, typically 12 to 18 months.

  3. Home equity loan: If you own your home, you may be able to get a loan based on the equity in your home to pay off your other debts, but you could lose your home if you don’t make your payments.

  4. Retirement account loan: If you have an employer sponsored savings or retirement account, you can withdraw some of that money to pay off your debts. The downsides are less funds for your retirement, and if you cannot repay the loan, you will have to pay penalties and taxes.

  5. Debt management plan: This option combines multiple debts into one monthly payment at a lower interest rate than most credit cards or loans, but usually comes with a start-up fee and a monthly fee, and it often takes three to five years to repay the debt.

Which lender is right for me?

NerdWallet has reviewed over 30 lenders to help you choose the right one for you. Below is a list of lenders that stand out debt consolidation loans.

Frequently Asked Questions

You can consolidate all of your debts into one payment by using a balance transfer card or a debt consolidation loan.

You may experience a temporary drop in your credit scores after applying for a debt consolidation loan because lenders need a high demand for credit. However, your credit scores should rebound if you make payments on time and avoid taking on new debt.

The interest rates on traditional debt consolidation loans generally range between 6% and 36%. You must have good credit to qualify for rates below this range.

You can use your credit cards after debt consolidation; However, it’s best to use them sparingly and pay off balances in full to avoid paying interest and getting into more debt.

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Nancy I. Romero