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Choosing the Right Debt Consolidation Company

Aug 17, 2007
Choosing to use a debt consolidation company for debt relief is something that should be approached very carefully. If you finally make the decision to do this you will need to arm yourself your information in order to keep from getting yourself into worse debt and to keep yourself out of the traps of scammers. Consider the following as you approach the debt consolidation companies: Debt consolidation agencies work under a business model of offering you a way to pay your debt with one "easy" payment. They offer to negotiate reduced interest rates with you creditors and handle paying them each month. All you have to do is pay the debt consolidation company who basically extended you another loan. The creditors typically give the debt consolidation company a rebate for their service of recovering at least some of the money owed them and avoiding the write - offs of the bad debt (although the write-off has some tax advantages for the creditor if they use accrual accounting methods).

First of all, understand that there is no quick-fix or easy way out of your debt situation. The key word here is "quick." Your debt situation did not happen quickly (although it was quick relative to how long it will take to get out of it) and it will not disappear quickly. So companies that advertise that you are just "one click away" from a solution should be avoided or at least approached with caution. A better strategy is to just avoid them.

A debt consolidation company is a business just like anyone else who offers a service. They have to make a profit too. So they usually do this by building in a fee for their service hidden within the monthly payment you agree to pay them. You are wise to shop around and make sure that their fees are fully disclosed and you know what you are actually paying. You need to know how much of your monthly payment is actually paying your debt. Just be aware of the rates in terms of interest and fees they are charging you. Remember that if you have had a bad spell with credit (which is why you sought them out in the first place) then they will build in those high fees or interest rates any way they can because you are stilled viewed as high risk.

The importance of doing your homework when choosing a debt consolidation is of paramount importance. Keeping in mind the prior statement that debt consolidation companies are businesses just like anyone else, remember that in order for them to sell their service they have to create a need for you. Your need is to get your debt paid off fast and sometimes they will lock you in by using scare tactics to make you feel like there is no hope if you don't use them. It is the oldest marketing technique in the book. Remember that most of what a debt consolidation company does you can do yourself with a little work. If they are trying to scare you into hiring them then you should be very suspicious.

So if you are dead set on using debt consolidation companies, just remember to stay away from the ones who promise a quick fix, promise to take care of everything, and try to scare you. Using those filters probably will narrow down your choices in companies drastically.
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For more resources on managing your debt visit: http://www.debtconsolidatecenter.com/
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