Spend that windfall wisely (even if you didn't win the Powerball lottery)

3. What other outstanding loans do I have?

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    Pro Chrysler Jeep lot man Hector Martinez removes personal effects from a Dodge Durango that was repossessed and returned to the Chrysler dealership in Thornton, Colo., in late 2008. If you have loans with higher interest rates than your credit cards, it probably makes sense to pay those loans off first.
    Rick Wilking/Reuters/File
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Consider paying off a personal loan instead of credit card debt, especially if that loan may has a higher interest rate than your credit card balances. For several years after the financial meltdown, credit card companies kept interest rates high. Recently, they have changed course and many have been offering zero-percent interest rates for balance transfers and new purchases with terms that last up to 18 months. If you take advantage of those offers, then it makes sense to first pay off a personal loan, if there is no prepayment penalty. 

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