If you have found yourself drowning in debt with loan companies constantly harassing you for money, debt consolidation might be a helpful solution for you. Although, keep in mind that getting your finances in order is not an overnight process. This process takes careful consideration and planning. As you read, you will learn how to make the correct decisions in your debt consolidation.
Avoid storefront debt consolidation and major banks. Finding the right lender is as easy as searching on the web. Lenders found on the Internet can offer you a more streamlined process and not bog you down in paperwork and red tape. These lenders do not have to wait on a paper process to get these loans done quickly.
If you think you have a debt consolation company that you want to work with, make sure you look them up on the Better Business Bureau. You should be able to see consumer reviews, which will help you determine if you really want to do business with them or not. Even doing a simple search online for the company’s name may bring up some helpful information.
Before going with any specific debt consolidation company, check their records with the Better Business Bureau. There are a lot of sketchy “opportunities” in the debt consolidation business. It’s easy to go down the wrong path if you aren’t careful. The BBB and its reports can help you weed out the bad from the good.
It is very important to select a debt consolidation agency with a good reputation. Do plenty of background research and contact your Better Business Bureau to make sure the professionals you are interested in are reliable and properly licensed. Do not hire a debt consolidation specialist who has some complaints pending against them.
If you make the decision to consolidate high interest debts such as credit card balances into a different obligation, do your absolute best not to begin racking up new debt until the consolidated amount is repaid. If you are doing nothing more than moving debts to different places while continuing to spend, you will not reap the benefits that debt consolidation really can provide.
It is best to work with a debt consolidation professional who is a member of debt consolidation organization. Ask if they are a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling or of the AICCCA. A professional who is not a member of any recognized organization is not a good choice.
When evaluating whether to use a certain debt consolidation agency, see if they are licensed by an outside organization, preferably the NFCC. Test them as well by seeing if they know how your debt consolidation situation is going to be affected by your state’s laws. Each state is different, and you need a licensed and certified debt specialist that knows about the different laws by states.
If you really want to pay off your debt, think about using your 401K. In this way, you are borrowing from yourself rather than from an institution. Just remember that taking money from your retirement funds can be a risky action, so make sure you explore the pros and cons before choosing this option.
Be sure your first talk with a credit counselor or debt consolidation agent happens for free. They should be able to do a preliminary analysis of who you owe, how the company can help you, and what options are available. If you cannot get a simple introductory session, look elsewhere.
See if there are individualized options for payments within the debt consolidation company that you like. Everyone has a different ability to pay and companies who don’t offer customization may not be right for you. Try finding a company that uses personalized payment plans. Even though it may be costly at first, you end up saving more in the end.
There is no harm in comparison shopping for consolidation loans. The fact is that some financial institutions, or friends and family, may offer you a better rate than others. Whether it is a line of credit, mortgage, credit card or loan, compare the interest rate and terms and figure out which is the best bet.
Learn about the privacy and security practices at any debt consolidation company you consider. It’s important that you know that there is a policy in place, even if it’s not something you think about all the time. You are going to be giving them very personal information, so make sure that the information is protected.
Understand that different debt consolidation plan may have differing levels of fees involved. These fees can be rather costly, so ask about them up front before making any decisions. If it appears you are getting hit with a landslide of fees, you may be better off choosing a different option.
Think carefully about why it is that you are interested in consolidation. Is the interest getting you down? Do you have a lot of debt? Or, do you need a little extra money each month to pay other bills? In order for debt consolidation to be worth it, your goals should encompass several of the points above.
There are three main debt consolidation strategies. These strategies include a home equity loan, using a credit card to absorb your debt or a loan. Consider the pros and cons of each strategy and make sure it is available to you. A good debt consolidation counselor should present you with more than one option.
Debt consolidation can be a serious benefit if you use it responsibly. You cannot simply get on the phone and start talking unless you acquire some knowledge first. You need to start to implement the things you’ve just learned about debt consolidation in order to make it work for you.