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Debt Consolidation or Debt Settlement?

Aug 17, 2007
We are a country in debt. Bankruptcies are at a record high. Consumers these days are searching for a way out. There are several options. One is a debt consolidation loan. There are many debt consolidation programs out there that can help you if that is the route you choose to follow. A debt consolidation loan is simply adding all your unsecured debts together and making one payment to pay them off. These are most often used for credit card debt consolidation. One thing you need to remember with debt consolidation is that you still owe the same amount of money. Its just a way of perhaps paying a smaller interest amount on the total.

Credit card use is at a record high. Consumers credit card balances are through the roof. Our economy has been slow, so many people have been using their credit cards not for luxuries but for food and utility bills. This is a situation that can be dangerous for the average person. When you are only paying the minimum payment on your balance each month, you will never pay the balance off.

This is where debt settlement comes in. When you use a debt settlement service, you are negotiating with your creditors for a smaller payoff balance. The debt settlement company negotiating that is. You pay them a fee for their services. They in turn try to get your companies to settle with you for sometimes pennies on the dollar. This allows you to pay off the smaller balances and get out of debt. There is a steep price to pay on your credit report however. It will be noted that you did not pay as agreed and this will affect your credit score. It is a better alternative to bankruptcy however.

Bankruptcy should only be a last resort. It is reserved for those with crushing amounts of debt and no ability to pay them. There have also been many changes in the bankruptcy laws which you should become very familiar with should you decide to look into bankruptcy as a resolution.

There are several routes that one can take when looking to resolve debt issues. They are: debt consolidation, debt settlement and bankruptcy. You should use caution when taking out an equity loan on your home because you are essentially trading unsecured debt for secured debt and if you are unable to make the payments, you could lose your home. Debt consolidation will have the least negative impact on your credit score and should be the first option you look into
About the Author
Jennie Crawford is a stay at home mom of two children. Find out more free information about debt consolidation at http://www.jenniecrawford.com/debtconsolidation
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