Gambling can be a relaxing and entertaining way to unwind after a long day. It can, however, become an issue for some people. According to the National Council on Problem Gambling, about two million people in the United States fulfill the criteria for pathological gambling. At the same time, another four to six million are considered problem gamblers.
Even if you’re not addicted to gambling, the truth is that gaming debts can swiftly mount – and endanger your financial well-being. If you’re drowning in debt, here are several options for getting out and getting gambling debt relief.
Ways to get out of gambling debt
The majority of the time, figuring out how to pay off gambling debt is similar to dealing with other ConsolidationNow types of debt.
Determine how much you owe.
After that, sum up how much you owe. It’s critical to know where you stand with this plan, just as with any other debt repayment strategy. List all of your debts, including total amounts owed, monthly payments, and interest rates. You may realize that you have a mix of personal loans, credit card debts, or other sorts of borrowing from loan sharks or bookies due to gambling in many circumstances.
Looking at a list of debts can be intimidating, but the reality is that you need to know what you’re up against before moving forward.
Do not add to your debt.
It’s critical to avoid accruing gaming debts as soon as possible – and seeking aid can assist you in doing so. Consult with friends and family for support during the process, or hire a professional to assist you in overcoming harmful behaviors. Both can assist in holding you accountable and encouraging you to quit accruing debt.
Consider substituting another hobby for gambling. Outdoor activities, movies, and learning a new hobby are all options for entertaining yourself and your loved ones. Fill your life with additional activities, especially ones you can do with family members, to help you cope while you seek expert assistance.
Admit to yourself that you have a problem.
Recognize that you may have an issue as the first step in moving forward. “Like alcohol, cigarettes, or other drugs of abuse, gambling can become an addiction,” according to the American Psychiatric Association (APA). Gambling conduct that causes injury, distress, or negative life consequences may indicate a gambling condition.”
According to the APA, if you feel compelled to lie to family, friends, or coworkers about how much you gamble, or if you feel made to keep wagering more money to come out ahead eventually, you may have a problem. Visit the National Council on Problem Gambling or look for a meeting of the support group Gamblers Anonymous to learn more about receiving treatment for a gambling problem.
If you cannot repay, look into debt relief options.
For other people, the debt may be too much to bear without a more comprehensive gambling debt relief strategy. Here are several debt relief options that may be able to assist you in getting out of your gambling debt and moving forward with your finances and life:
For the vast majority of people, bankruptcy is a last resort. However, if your gambling debt is so large that no other option appears viable, it may be worthwhile to file for chapter 7 or chapter 13 bankruptcy. Be warned, however, that in the case of gambling, your creditors may object to the action. Some attorneys advise waiting until your most recent gaming debt is at least 90 days old before filing.
Furthermore, your debt may not be discharged if the creditor can show that you had no intention of repaying the amount when you took it on. And, of course, bankruptcy has a long-term negative influence on your credit.
Work out a payment plan with your creditors:
You can also approach your creditors and ask for their assistance in coming up with a payment plan. With a payment plan, you may be able to manage your monthly cash flow better, and in some situations, you may be able to get a reduced interest rate and pay off your debt faster.
The National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) will assist you in identifying a debt management counselor in your area. A professional NFCC firm can assist you in developing a debt management plan and a payment schedule that matches your budget.
Debt settlement allows you to pay a lower amount than the entire amount you owe on your debt.
In some circumstances, this will necessitate a one-time payment. Some firms can assist you with debt settlement, but you must be cautious of scammers. Furthermore, debt settlement can harm your credit score. Before you proceed, carefully consider debt settlement firms.
If you have strong credit, you may be able to obtain an unsecured debt consolidation loan to assist you in repaying your gambling debt. This type of loan would allow you to consolidate all of your debts into one convenient payment, with a (hopefully) cheaper interest rate.
Gambling debt relief is handled similarly to any other unsecured debt, so it’s crucial to consider your alternatives and choose which scenario is most likely to work in your situation.
Think about how you’re going to receive the money.
It’s time to establish a plan to get out of debt now that you know where you stand. Raising funds for gambling debt relief may assist you in moving forward. Consider the following ideas for earning extra cash to help you pay off your debt:
Home equity line of credit:
Most certainly, your home is your most precious asset. You may generally acquire a decent interest rate with a home equity loan. You do, however, run the risk of losing your home if you don’t make your payments.
Loans from a 401(k) plan:
This may not be the best alternative because it pulls some of your money out of the market.
If you have the financial means, you may be able to borrow money to pay off your gambling obligations. You reinvest the interest you pay in your 401(k) (k). However, keep in mind that you may face penalties and taxes if you don’t repay the loan on time.
Sell unused items
Think about selling some of the products you don’t use anymore. Local classifieds, Craigslist, and eBay are all viable options for selling. You can use this money to pay off your debts.
Look for a second job
You might need more money than you can get by cutting back on your spending and selling your belongings. A second job can help you make extra money to pay off your bills, and once you’re debt-free, you can stop working.
Reduce your monthly spending:
Examine your earnings and outgoings. Do you have any places where you could save money on services or products? You can put some of that money toward paying off your gambling debt if you cut out the wasteful spending.
Make use of the sharing economy:
If acquiring a second job isn’t an option, the sharing economy may be able to help. You can use Airbnb to rent out a room in your house or drive Uber or Lyft on your own time. You have a little more flexibility in earning more money in the sharing economy.
Consider what steps will be most beneficial in reducing your debt and assisting you in getting back on your feet. You might be able to get out of your gambling debt faster if you use a combination of tactics.
Finally, your gambling debt is likely to be regarded similarly to any other debt. The first step toward recovery is recognizing that you may be a compulsive gambler and seeking help to stop gambling. After that, you can consider your possibilities for obtaining gambling debt relief.