Are you knowledgeable when it comes to debt consolidation options? Perhaps you’ve accumulated a large number of debts with different interest rates, and things are spinning out of control. It’s probably time for you to take care of your finances and this is what debt consolidation can help you to achieve. Keep reading to find out if debt consolidation is for you.
Ask your credit card company if they’d accept a lump payment for a lesser amount than the debt. Many companies will accept 20% to 30% less than the amount you owe currently just to get the cash in hand. If you can scrape up the cash, this is an excellent way to save funds that can go to other debts.
Try keeping and applying for those introductory 0% interest credit card offers in the mail. Consider the amount of interest that you may save via consolidating all that debt onto your new card. You must use caution, though. Keep to a plan that lets you pay off the transferred debt during your low interest period. Don’t miss payments or you will make your interest rates go up drastically. Don’t open multiple cards and keep one of your old ones with a small balance on it.
Investigate any debt consolidation company you are considering. That means calling the Better Business Bureau, but it also means you need to do some online research. Most companies will have reviews written by people who used them. Watch for any company that does not seem to have positive reviews, that could be a problem.
If you are struggling with debt and have a free and clear title to a car, boat or other motorized vehicle, consider a title loan. A title loan allows you to keep your motorized vehicle as long as you make your payments on time. Many times, you can lower your overall interest rate using this type of service.
Get a debt consolidation company’s TOS (terms of service) in writing before making any decisions. It should have information about their fees and how long you will have to use their services. They should also outline what the benefits of using their company are. If you cannot get anything in writing, steer away from the company.
Some creditors will consider your debt as paid off if you can give them enough cash to cover 70% of what you owe them. Contact your different creditors to see if they are interested in this kind of payment arrangement. Try gathering as much cash as possible so you can make a reasonable offer to your creditors.
Talk with your creditors about combining all your bills into one simple payment. Many people get out debt this way and you can, too. You can do this by contacting all your creditors and working out a payment plan, or you can speak with a reputable debt consolidation company who will do the work on your behalf.
Always call your state’s consumer protection agency before signing anything with a debt consolidation agency. Make sure the agency is properly registered, has a valid license and no complaints filed. You should not work with a professional who is about to lose their license because of complaints filed by consumers.
This method of paying off your debts is typically sought after because people need to reduce their monthly payments to have enough money to pay their other bills. You also can reduce your interest costs and pay off your debts in full faster. If you aren’t interested in all three benefits, this isn’t the method for you.
Remember that debt consolidation isn’t for everyone. You’re a good candidate if you have multiple debts like medical bills, credit card bills, personal loans, unsecured debts, collection accounts, etc. Consider your interest rates because if they’re over 15%, you’re paying too much with financial charges every month, which is money that you could save or use for your retirement account. Finally, consider if you have a hard time making minimum payments, have gotten behind recently, or are close to your limits. If these apply to you, debt consolidation may be a solution.
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.
Find out what type of educational materials or workshops the debt consolidation company has available. Are they offered at no cost to you? Are the materials found on the Internet or will they be shipped to your house? A debt management plan should not be your only option, and if a company claims it is, work with someone else.
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.
While engaging in a debt consolidation means a smaller bill in the short term, remember that it also means your payments will drag on for much longer. Can you afford that if something were to happen in the future? Some people find that paying off one of their smaller debts works better for them. Consider your options.
If you borrow money from family as a debt consolidation loan, be sure to put the contract into writing. This protects both sides and will be convincing to the person you ask for the money, letting them know that you are serious. Be sure to figure out the interest and monthly payments you can afford before you ask.
Now that you’ve explored your options, you can decide what is best for your situation. This should match your personal situation, and be made with the utmost care. Then you can put debt into its place! By doing so, you don’t have to worry about debt consuming your life any longer.