Debt Relief: an Opportunity to Become Debt Free

Written by admin on April 30th, 2011

Personal debt is increasingly becoming a large problem in the recent years. For instance, it is estimated that in late 2007, the average total debt load per household soared to ,000 for the first time. The average debt carried by per household jumped by 54% between the year 1990 and 2007, now the debt load is ,000 if only mortgage and consumer debt is considered. With such large debt loads, many individuals are facing difficulties in making repayments on debts and are in need of debt relief.

A growing number of companies across the country offer debt relief programs. These companies negotiate with your creditors and reduce your monthly payments up to 40-60%. Thus, by getting enrolled in a debt relief company you can become debt-free in 12 to 36 months without a loan. In case you do not desire to hire a debt professional to negotiate with your creditors then you can directly deal with your creditors and get your debts in control.

If you are planning to seek professional advice from companies offering debt relief services then it is suggested that you do your homework properly. Some of these debt relief programs are scams run by fraudulent agencies who can’t deliver on their promises. While dealing with them you must remain cautious because if you fall for their pitch, then you could lose hundreds and even thousands of dollars in fees and find yourself in worse financial shape. You’ll carry just as much debt as when you started the debt relief program, in addition to it you will also have to pay additional late fees and other penalties.

Facing piling bills can be frightening, but the decision of choosing a debt relief program should not be made on hearing a radio commercial or getting a flier in your mail. You must find an agency that will come up with a debt relief plan tailored to suit your needs.

Shop around a bit to find the right agency. Compare a couple of services offered by different agencies so that you understand how they operate. There are many agencies that charge ridiculously high service fees. Be wary of such agencies and know your rights. According to The Consumer Federation of America you shouldn’t pay more than for the set-up fee and not more than as monthly fees. If you find that the agency is vague or reluctant to talk about fees, then consider it as a red flag and go someplace else.

Ask a lot of questions to the professional who will be attending you and remember to get those answers in writing. The concerned person should spend at least half an hour with you in order to assess your financial condition. If the concerned person is only interested in talking about the fees rather than listening to you then consider it as a warning sign. It is also advisable to check out the agencies with the Better Business Bureau or your local consumer protection office.

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