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Get a handle on your loved one's loans and other debts.


What You Should Know

In order to get a complete picture of your loved one’s finances, you need to be aware of all their financial obligations. A home mortgage is the obvious place to start, but they may also have a home equity loan. Auto loans are the next logical place to look. Finally, don’t forget about personal loans from friends and family. Consolidating these loans can reduce interest payments, and paying them off entirely will eliminate interest. Conversely, if your loved one has loaned — or is still lending — money to friends and family, make sure they’re not being taken advantage of.

Steps To Take

  • Make a list of your loved one's loans (both those made to them and to others).
  • Talk to your loved one's lender(s) about consolidating larger debts such as mortgages.
  • Combine smaller debts into a single loan at a lower interest rate, if possible.
  • If your loved one is owed any money, make sure it's being repaid.
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