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Dollars and Sense: Ways to negotiate your debt and expenses

There are ways to save money while also paying our bills. A certified financial planner showed us how to negotiate some of our bills and debt.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Right now, money is tight for many Americans, but there are ways to save our cash while also paying our bills.

Kimberly Foss with Empyrion Wealth Management is giving us three tips on how we can save money, especially if we have debt.

Negotiate or transfer your credit card debt.

“A lot of credit card companies are offering different payment plans,” Foss said. “The big thing is you really need to reach out to them. If you have trouble paying that bill, just call and ask.”

Foss adds you can ask for a reduced fee or renegotiate the entire debt. In addition, there are some companies right now offering a 0% interest rate up to 20 months. However, be aware if you miss a payment or continue to add more debt, your credit score can go down. Also if you don’t pay off your card during the 0% introductory rate, expect to pay a high interest rate.

Shop around for your cable and internet.

“A lot of internet companies are losing to other providers, so they’re actually offering free months and there are no fees or very low fees for the first year," Foss said.

Check out payment programs options with your utility companies. 

SMUD will not turn off your power if you can’t pay your bill through the beginning of January 2021. However, SMUD said that date may be extended. SMUD also won’t add any late fees, but you are still expected to pay what you owe eventually. Make sure to contact SMUD's customer service because they are working with people on options, such as payment plans.

PG&E also has some programs where qualified households can save 20% or more each month on their energy bill.

Have a personal or business finance question that needs an answer? Let the dollars and sense team know by texting us at 916-321-3310

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