Need a debt management program? Here are some things to consider when looking for help with your debt problems

Debt Management Programs such as debt negotiation and settlement are rapidly becoming the top method for consumers to get rid of high interest debt. You can either consolidate your debt with low interest loans or eliminate it altogether. If you make minimum payments each month on your high interest debts, it could take you 30-40 years to pay them off. Debt settlement companies negotiate with your creditors on your behalf to help get you out of debt as quickly as possible. Most settlement programs will charge for their services, but it should still be less than what you are paying in interest charges alone each month. They should have you out of debt in 12-36 months, depending on your financial situation.

Find more information about home equity loans.

Consumer credit counseling is another debt management program that is popular. A counselor will meet with you, analyze your debts, other obligations and monthly income. The counselor will form a monthly budget and a repayment plan that usually includes lowering of interest rates and monthly payments. An added benefit is that the counselor will also help you understand how you got so deeply in debt and how to avoid getting there again. Paying off your high interest debt does very little good if you don't change your purchasing habits.

Who You Can Turn To For Debt Management Help

  • Debt Settlement America's program can help you become debt free within 12-36 months. They can reduce your debt 40-60%.

  • American Consumer Credit Counseling offers credit counseling, debt consolidation and credit card help through financial education and debt management. They're a non profit credit counseling company, in business since 1991.
  • Fresh Start America goes directly to your creditors, explains your hardship and negotiates a reduced payoff of up to 60% or more of the amount owed.
  • American Liberty Financial is a leader in debt settlement and credit restoration. Payments are lower than consolidation, and you can be debt free in less time.
  • Freedom Debt Relief has an online form and debt calculator to determine how quickly they can have you out of debt.

Still Not Convinced?

If you decide against using a debt management program, there are only a few other alternatives for you.

  • Continue paying minimum payments. If you keep at it, you may eventually get out of debt, but making just the minimum payment each month will mean your interest continues to soar, the principal does not get much smaller, and it will take you anywhere from 20-40 years to pay your way out of debt. Your credit card company can decide to raise your interest as well, making it even harder to get out of debt.

  • Debt Consolidation Loan. Not a management program, but a new loan. All your outstanding debts will be consolidated into a new loan, usually a "secured" loan, and usually only available to homeowners. Your home is your collateral, miss a payment or two and you may lose your home. You'll actually add to your debt, because of the fees involved in creating this new loan, generally a home equity loan based on the equity in your home.
  • Default on your obligations. Not a good option, this ruins your credit rating, ruins your chances to get any new credit such as a home loan, and exposes you to harassment from collection agencies. Makes about as much sense as the final option.
  • Bankruptcy. Use this only as a last resort. This follows you for the rest of your life, even after the 7-10 years when it usually disappears from your credit report. Lenders will ask if you have ever filed for bankruptcy, and to lie about it is a federal offense.

Debt management programs are still the best option you have in resolving your financial problems. Bankruptcy or defaulting on your loans really are not options, and while a debt consolidation loan is a viable alternative, care must be used before signing away the possibility of losing your home should you be unable to make the payments. Using a debt management program results in reducing your debt load so that you can more easily meet your financial obligations. And debt counselors can help you change your spending habits so you don't end up in the same boat a few years down the road.

The best solution to solve your debts is debt consolidation. Every one knows that debt is a financial hazard and it occurs when someone borrows money for personal expenditures and later on becomes unable to pay back the amount to the creditor on time. This situation is termed as bad credit. Nowadays this problem has taken a high tide as most of the people remain unable to do proper debt management. People who are unable to keep track of their credit report become a victim of this situation.

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