How Long Does.It Take For A Card Charge To.Fix Credit Counseling – What You Need To Know Before You Sign Up

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Credit Counseling – What You Need To Know Before You Sign Up

On the one hand, credit counseling can be a good way to resolve debt while avoiding bankruptcy. On the other hand, it can be like an onion; once you peel back the layers, you might cry when you see what you’re doing.

Consumer credit counseling companies are organized as for-profit or not-for-profit. Recently, Nonprofit Credit Counseling in America has been in the media and in the spotlight of the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”). The IRS has cracked down on some of the biggest players in the industry. Forty-one credit counseling companies had their tax-exempt (non-profit) status revoked; they found that many companies did not offer the necessary level of consulting or education to qualify for tax-exempt status.

What credit counseling companies do (regardless of profit status) is arrange for you to pay off your full principal balance(s) on terms that are easier to service, such as a longer amortization period and/ or a reduced interest rate. This means that if you owe $10,000 and pay an average of 15% interest on all your debts, you’ll still owe $10,000, but hopefully they’ll drop your interest rate to at least half of your original rate and set up more affordable payments usually for a longer period of time. Provided you can afford the entire plan and fees, you will be debt free at some point. Remember, non-profit doesn’t mean free, they still charge you a fee.

Credit counseling is reported on your credit report as an R7 and is viewed negatively by any creditor. As a result, if you have a 7-year repayment plan, don’t count on using credit cards, getting a car loan or a mortgage for the next 7 years plus the time it takes you to rebuild your credit score.

The origins of credit counseling date back to the 1980s when donors got together and created it to recover money from people in debt. The new Consumer Credit Counseling banner at the time was distanced from lenders under a friendlier not-for-profit status, which built trust and worked well with the public. People signed up in droves, and for-profit companies followed suit shortly thereafter.

If you owe less than $10,000, credit counseling is probably not a bad idea and a good alternative to bankruptcy. However, people still fail these plans because they take a lot of time and a lot of money is swallowed up in maintenance fees over several years.

A new entry into the debt management market is debt settlement. Debt settlement is a popular option in America and the movement is gaining momentum in Canada. Unlike credit counseling, debt settlement actually reduces the principal balance you owe to about 40%-70% of your original principal balance. A credit counseling service does not do this, it only freezes or lowers your interest rate.

If you owe more than you can manage, consider debt settlement as an option. This is an excellent opportunity to quickly erase your debt while saving a significant amount of money without doing the same damage to your credit score that bankruptcy would. I have seen people with $50,000 in debt become completely debt free in just 30 days if they have the right resources. Others may take up to 36 months depending on their ability to settle. Debt settlement companies are also agents acting in your best interest and are not directed or managed by the same people you owe as credit counseling companies. In most cases, debt settlement companies’ fees are based on the money you save, meaning they work to save you as much as possible. See http://totaldebtfreedom.ca/ for more information on debt settlement.

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