Many who are deep in debt could benefit from the help of a financial professional who can guide them through their options, answer tough questions and help prepare them for future success. Fortunately, experts are available, both in the form of credit counselors who work through credit counseling agencies and Certified Debt Specialists who work for debt relief companies. Which type of counseling is best for you?
Traditional consumer credit counseling through an agency aims to help consumers who need help managing their finances. Similarly to how you would visit an academic advisor for educational guidance, a credit counselor uses their expertise to help their clients improve their finances. They can help you review your current financial situation, discuss any concerns, and help you implement strategies to achieve your money goals. Credit counselors may also provide you with budgeting tools or recommend that you enroll in a debt management plan (DMP).
Debt relief companies, like Accredited Debt Relief, have Certified Debt Specialists who can provide counseling and guidance to clients. In addition to offering free debt consultations, they can match you with customized programs to help you overcome your debt in as little as 12-48 months.
One key difference between working with credit counselors and Certified Debt Specialists is the amount of savings you could see. Credit counselors may be able to help you reduce your interest rates and fees, and they can sometimes arrange for new terms with your creditors to lower your monthly payments. However, credit counselors typically aren’t able to reduce the principal balances you owe. Certified Debt Specialists, on the other hand, can work with creditors on your behalf to reduce the overall amount you owe by as much as 50%.
When Mike became unemployed, he and Rhonda had to rely on their savings and credit cards to get by. Accredited Debt Relief helped them overcome their debt, saving them over $20,000.
You're paying too much interest or are stuck making only minimum payments
One or more of your credit cards are maxed out or your credit utilization is over 40%
You miss payments or you can’t afford both your monthly payments and basic needs
Your debt is worsening your quality of life, physically or mentally
Credit counseling can be helpful for those who are looking for a little extra guidance. If you’re just beginning to struggle with debt payments, a credit counseling session can provide you with budgeting guidance and the tools you need to prevent a smaller debt situation from getting out of hand.
One of the biggest downsides to credit counseling is that it cannot lower the total amount of debt you have. Debt management programs may lead to lower interest rates and a better payment schedule, but they can’t reduce your principal balance like a debt settlement program can.
Pros of Credit Counseling
Cons of Credit Counseling
Credit counseling isn't restricted to those who are already drowning in debt; if you are interested in planning ahead for financial success, a credit counselor can provide you with more information and answer your financial questions. Whether you've just received your first credit card, want some budgeting guidance, are just beginning to struggle with credit card payments or are handling more debt than you can manage, credit counselors can assist you and point you in the right direction.
It's important to remember that although credit counseling services can work with creditors to reduce your monthly payments, they can’t reduce your principal balances. If you’re looking for ways to negotiate with creditors and reduce your overall debt, it’s better to seek help from a debt settlement company.
Accredited Debt Relief has helped customers across the country consolidate and resolve their debts. With an A+ BBB rating, we offer customized financial solutions that can help you pay off your debt obligations quicker. Our experienced team can help lower your monthly payments and reduce what you owe overall. To learn more and receive a free, no obligation consultation, contact us today.
Enrolled Debt: $43,922
Final Debt: $21,403
Enrolled Debt: $21,974
Final Debt: $12,797
Enrolled Debt: $24,954
Final Debt: $10,634
* These examples do not include program fees. This is small sample of debt settlements our negotiation team has achieved for our clients. These settlements were obtained for clients who successfully met all of their program terms and received settlement offers. Results may vary, and there are no guarantees that all creditors will agree to settle. These examples are not representative of results in all cases.
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