Consolidate Debt Calculator: Will Consolidating Really Save You Money?

Consolidate Debt Calculator Sign

This calculator will calculate the loan consolidation consequences of combining all of your debts into a single loan payment.

The calculated results include a side-by-side chart comparing the payment amount, number of payments, and loan costs with and without the consolidation.

Finally, the calculator also includes a bar graph to give you a visual reference as to the cost difference.

But before you use the calculator, please make sure you are aware of the lesser known debt consolidation pros and cons by visiting the Aware tab.

Read more ...

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Consolidate Debt Calculator

Calculate the net effects of debt consolidation to see if consolidating your debts into a single loan will actually save you money.

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Selected Data Record:

A Data Record is a set of calculator entries that are stored in your web browser's Local Storage. If a Data Record is currently selected in the "Data" tab, this line will list the name you gave to that data record. If no data record is selected, or you have no entries stored for this calculator, the line will display "None".

DataData recordData recordSelected data record: None
Enter Debts

Enter Debts:

Note that depending on the width of the calculator, you will see either a vertical entry form optimized for mobile devices (narrow widths) or a horizontal entry form optimized for desktop devices (widths wide enough to accommodate rows and columns of entry fields).

To add a debt, enter the name, balance, interest rate, and payment amount. When you're satisfied with the entries, tap the + button (may also appear as "Add" or "Add Debt" depending on the width of your device).

To edit a debt in the list, tap the radio button in the Edit column. This will load the debt into the form for editing. When you're satisfied with the changes you've made, tap the S button (may also appear as "Save" or "Save Changes" depending on the width of your device).

To delete a debt from the list, tap the radio button in the Edit column. This will load the debt into the form for deleting. Tap the button (may also appear as "Delete" depending on the width of your device).

To clear the form to create a new debt entry, tap the C button (may also appear as "Clr" or "Clear" depending on the width of your device).

To add a debt to your consolidation plan, click the Add Debt Row button. Then complete the row of entries for the debt you are adding.

To remove a debt from your consolidation plan, click the X button in the left-hand column of the row you wish to remove.

Important! The entered debts are saved in your device's random memory (temporary storage), which means that if you surf to another calculator or close this browser window you will need to re-enter your debts.

X
Creditor
Name

Creditor name:

Enter the name of the creditor as you want it to appear on the printed report.


Principal
Balance ($)

Principal balance:

Enter the principal balance of the debt, without any dollar sign or commas. Note that this is not equal to the number of payments left times the payment amount -- because that would include interest charges you don't yet owe. What you want to enter here is how much cash it would take to pay off the debt today (call your creditor if you're not sure).


Interest
Rate (%)

Annual interest rate:

Enter the annual interest rate of the debt. Enter as a percentage without the percent sign (for .06 or 6%, enter 6). If this debt has more than one interest rate (1 for purchases and 1 for cash advances), enter the higher of the two. It's always best to use worse-case scenarios.


Payment
Amt ($)

Monthly principal and interest payment:

Enter the monthly payment for the debt, without the dollar sign or commas. If you are including your mortgage in the debt consolidation loan, be sure to only enter the principal and interest portion of your mortgage payment (leave out the portion for taxes and insurance).


Interest
Cost

Interest cost:

Based on your principal, interest rate and payment amount entries, this is how much interest you will pay on this debt between now and when you make the final payment. If the field displays an ERROR, it means that at the terms you entered the debt will never be paid off. Therefore, in order to enter the debt you will need to increase the payment amount until the error goes away.


# Pmts
Left

Number of payments remaining:

Based on your principal, interest rate and payment amount entries, this column calculates the number of monthly payments remaining on the debt. If the field displays an ERROR, it means that at the terms you entered the debt will never be paid off. Therefore, in order to enter the debt you will need to increase the payment amount until the error goes away.

Totals: 
Creditor:Creditor name:Creditor name:Creditor name:

Creditor name:

Enter the name of the creditor as you want it to appear on the printed report.

Payoff amt:Payoff amount:Principal balance:Principal balance (payoff amount):

Principal balance:

Enter the principal balance of the debt, without any dollar sign or commas. Note that this is not equal to the number of payments left times the payment amount -- because that would include interest charges you don't yet owe. What you want to enter here is how much cash it would take to pay off the debt today (call your creditor if you're not sure).

$
Rate:Interest rate:Annual interest rate:Annual interest rate:

Annual interest rate:

Enter the annual interest rate of the debt. Enter as a percentage without the percent sign (for .06 or 6%, enter 6). If this debt has more than one interest rate (1 for purchases and 1 for cash advances), enter the higher of the two. It's always best to use worse-case scenarios.

%
Pmt/month:Monthly pmt:Monthly P&I payment:Monthly principal and interest payment:

Monthly principal and interest payment:

Enter the monthly payment for the debt, without the dollar sign or commas. If you are including your mortgage in the debt consolidation loan, be sure to only enter the principal and interest portion of your mortgage payment (leave out the portion for taxes and insurance).

$
Interest:Interest cost:Interest cost:Interest cost:

Interest cost:

Based on your principal, interest rate and payment amount entries, this is how much interest you will pay on this debt between now and when you make the final payment. If the field displays an ERROR, it means that at the terms you entered the debt will never be paid off. Therefore, in order to enter the debt you will need to increase the payment amount until the error goes away.

Pmts left:Payments left:Number of payments left:Number of payments remaining:

Number of payments remaining:

Based on your principal, interest rate and payment amount entries, this column calculates the number of monthly payments remaining on the debt. If the field displays an ERROR, it means that at the terms you entered the debt will never be paid off. Therefore, in order to enter the debt you will need to increase the payment amount until the error goes away.

Consolidation Loan Terms

Consolidation Loan Terms:

After entering all of your debts, enter the consolidation loan terms into this section, and then click the "Calculate Consolidation" button.

Loan rate:Consolidation rate:Consolidating loan's interest rate:Consolidating loan's annual interest rate:

Consolidating loan's annual interest rate:

Enter the annual interest rate of the debt consolidation loan. Enter as a percentage without the percent sign (for .06 or 6%, enter 6).

%
Loan years:Consolidation years:Consolidating loan's term in years:Consolidating loan's term in number of years:

Consolidating loan's term:

Enter the term of the debt consolidation loan in number of years.

#
Loan fees:Consolidation fees:Consolidating loan fees:Total of any consolidation loan fees:

Total of any consolidation loan fees:

Enter any fees or costs associated to the debt consolidation loan (closing costs, origination fees, etc.). Enter as a dollar amount, but without the dollar sign and any commas.

$
Comparison Results
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With
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Diff +/-Diff +/-Diff +/-Diff +/-
Pmt:Pmt:Payment:Monthly Payment:

Monthly payment row:

Total of monthly payments Without consolidation and With consolidation. A plus (+) sign in the Diff +/- column indicates the consolidation loan payment is greater than the total of your current payments. A minus (-) sign indicates the consolidation loan payment is less than the total of your current payments.

Pmts:Pmts:# payments:# of payments:

Months until debts are paid off:

The number of months until debts are paid off Without consolidation and With consolidation. A plus (+) sign in the Diff +/- column indicates the consolidation payoff term is greater than the current payoff term. A minus (-) sign indicates the consolidation payoff term is less than the current payoff term.

Cost:Cost:Total cost:Total cost:

Total cost row:

Total of cost (interest and loan fees) Without consolidation and With consolidation. A plus (+) sign in the Diff +/- column indicates the consolidation loan will cost you more than your current payoff interest charges. A minus (-) sign indicates the consolidation loan will cost you less than your current payoff interest charges.

If you would like to save the current entries to the secure online database, tap or click on the Data tab, select "New Data Record", give the data record a name, then tap or click the Save button. To save changes to previously saved entries, simply tap the Save button. Please select and "Clear" any data records you no longer need.

Help and Tools

Aware

The pros and cons of debt consolidation.

The Cons

Con #1: If you've ever used a debt consolidation calculator on a lender's website, and the results described a payment decrease as a "savings," then the "Con" you need to be most aware of is ... the lender!

Look, just because combining your debts into a single loan will result in a lower payment, DOES NOT mean you will experience a "savings."

Why not?

Because if the interest rate is higher or the repayment term is longer, you will likely end up paying more in interest charges than if you didn't combine your debts into a single loan.

You see, it's the total cost (loan fees and interest charges) of the consolidation loan that determines if you will save any money, NOT the payment amount.

Con #2: Another potential drawback to consolidating your debts, is that most people I know who have consolidated their debts have done so using a home equity loan (HELOC).

What's wrong with that?

Well, nothing ... unless it bothers you that you are probably converting mostly non-secured debts into a secured debt.

If you fall behind in your payments on a non-secured debt, about the worst that can happen is that you might get harassed by a bill collector.

However, if you fall behind on your mortgage payment, you could end up living in a homeless shelter. If that doesn't bother you, then the home equity loan will probably offer the lowest interest rate for your consolidation loan.

Con #3: A third potential drawback to consolidating your debts, is that it lessens the pain of having lived beyond your means. And without that constant painful reminder of the mistakes you've made in the past, you may not have learned a harsh enough lesson to keep you from getting into trouble again.

The Pros

Sorry, but I defer to your lender because frankly, they have likely covered every conceivable benefit -- and then some.

I always vote for paying off each debt separately, one painful-reminding payment at a time. If you want to actually "save" money while paying off your debts, I suggest using the rollover method instead (Rapid Debt Reduction Calculator).

Adjust Calculator Width:

Move the slider to left and right to adjust the calculator width. Note that the Help and Tools panel will be hidden when the calculator is too wide to fit both on the screen. Moving the slider to the left will bring the instructions and tools panel back into view.

Also note that some calculators will reformat to accommodate the screen size as you make the calculator wider or narrower. If the calculator is narrow, columns of entry rows will be converted to a vertical entry form, whereas a wider calculator will display columns of entry rows, and the entry fields will be smaller in size ... since they will not need to be "thumb friendly".

Show/Hide Popup Keypads:

Select Show or Hide to show or hide the popup keypad icons located next to numeric entry fields. These are generally only needed for mobile devices that don't have decimal points in their numeric keypads. So if you are on a desktop, you may find the calculator to be more user-friendly and less cluttered without them.

Stick/Unstick Tools:

Select Stick or Unstick to stick or unstick the help and tools panel. Selecting "Stick" will keep the panel in view while scrolling the calculator vertically. If you find that annoying, select "Unstick" to keep the panel in a stationary position.

If the tools panel becomes "Unstuck" on its own, try clicking "Unstick" and then "Stick" to re-stick the panel.