When the crushing weight of your debt keeps you awake at night, you’d do just about anything to get rid of it.
You’re not alone.
Approximately 43 percent of Americans carry revolving credit card debt, meaning they pay off the interest and minimum payment monthly. If you’re among the 120 million Americans who have increased their credit card usage and continued to carry debt during these dire times, you can find relief.
Credit card debt relief companies earned a tarnished reputation before the federal government stepped in with the Credit Card Debt Relief Act 2010. This act weeded out the shady companies that took advantage of debtors already suffering from high-interest rates and the inability to pay back their loans.
Today’s credit card debt relief companies can truly help you. Keep reading to learn about your options if you’re struggling to pay off your credit card.
Avoid These Choices
When you recognize the mess of debt you’re in, you will be tempted to fix the problem yourself. However, often consumers don’t know where to begin, and they start by making choices that will cause them even more financial damage. Here are a few things you should not do when your debt panic sets in:
Borrow against your home
Your home is your biggest asset, so do not borrow against it. You run the risk of foreclosure and losing your home for the tradeoff of paying off an unsecured debt like your credit card.
Plus, you can always file bankruptcy if you have to over unsecured debt. You cannot file bankruptcy to save your home. In the end, you’ll run the risk of ending up homeless if you borrow against your home
Choose Unsecured Debt Over Secured Debt
An unsecured debt does not have a tangible item behind it. Credit card debt qualifies as unsecured because when you do not pay it, the company cannot take away the things you bought with the credit card.
A secured debt has a tangible item as collateral. A car payment would qualify as a secured debt.
Do not ever choose to skip the payment for secured debt. You could lose an item such as your car when you do not make this monthly payment. Yes, you will have creditors breathing down your neck to pay a hospital bill or credit card, but you do not give in to the temptation to pay them first.
Pull Money From Retirement
At all costs, protect your retirement. The constant calling of creditors will tempt you to pull money from your retirement to pay them.
Creditors do not care about your long-term welfare. They just want their money. Withdrawing money from your retirement to pay for credit card debt is financial suicide.
Decide Based On Pressure
Collectors have experience in how to put the right pressure on their debtors. Do not give in to this pressure by listening to the creditor with the most threatening voice. You will make a bad choice.
Rather, step away from the creditors. Evaluate your financial situation, and research a credit card debt relief program that works for you. Then make a wise choice.
The DIY Approach
Your resilient nature will tell you that you can solve this problem yourself. After all, you made this mess, so you’re the one that should clean it up. At least, this is what you may tell yourself.
You can certainly attempt to do the same thing that debt relief professionals do.
You will first need to contact all of your creditors. You’ll have to explain to each one what happened that caused you to fall behind in your payments, and you’ll ask them what you have to do to catch up financially. You might even stumble across a hardship program and a company willing to waive fees or lower your interest rates.
This process will take time. You’ll have to teach yourself about debt settlement or how to negotiate agreements with professional creditors.
The DIY process can work, but it takes time. You’ll have to take the time to learn the ins and outs of the credit card industry as well as effective negotiation tactics. You’ll also have to accept the fact that paying off the credit card will take time.
In the meantime, you will need to tighten your financial belt even more at home. You won’t be able to secure any other loans because of your debt. You’ll need to avoid using any sort of credit card as you negotiate debt relief on your own.
Professional Credit Card Debt Relief
Prior to 2010, credit card debt relief companies earned themselves a bad name. They swept in with promises to alleviate families from their crushing debt. They said they’d negotiate better fees and interest rates.
In the end, though, many failed to do so and left debtors with an even bigger mess of fees and costs for their services.
Then came the Debt Relief act 2010. Credit card debt relief laws such as this one banned for-profit debt settlement companies from requiring upfront fees before they helped consumers. Consumers did not have to pay for the debt relief services until the company had proven itself by reducing at least 35 percent of the consumer’s overall balance.
Shady debt relief companies died off, unable to survive without their costly upfront fees. Legitimate services survived, and thus we now have a variety of good companies who can help you find the best debt settlement deal.
Professionals can negotiate a better deal for you than you could yourself. They can perform credit card debt consolidation, where they consolidate your debts and give you one, affordable payment. Here’s how professional debt settlement works:
- Talk to an expert. A debt settlement expert will weed through your financials to help you figure out which debts qualify for the debt settlement program.
- Enroll in a program. Debts that qualify will go into a debt settlement program. At this point you start setting aside money each month, putting it into a savings account to pay off your debt as a negotiator works with your creditors to negotiate down your debt.
- Reach a settlement. Once the negotiator has reached a settlement, you can use your dedicated savings to pay the amount, and your debt will disappear.
Professionals have the experience to negotiate better than you, so they’re worth trusting.
Find Relief Today
You can sleep well at night knowing that your credit card debt is gone. Professional credit card debt relief will help you find this peace.
If you’re weighed down with the burden of credit card debt, contact us today. We’d love to help you figure things out.