It’s hard to believe that Florida’s economy was flying high just a few years ago. Powered by a boom in the construction and banking industries, the state was attracting thousands of new arrivals every month. Entire towns were being built from scratch on the picturesque fields, wetlands and beaches that define the state to many outsiders.
These days, things are far different. Florida’s unemployment rate remains above 8 percent. Nearly 15 percent of the state’s population lives below the poverty line. Meanwhile, its median household income is $5,000 below the national average.
It’s no wonder that Floridians are racking up consumer debt at breathtaking speeds. From Miami to Pensacola, Florida’s homeowners and consumers are leveraging themselves at unprecedented rates. If you’re a hard-working Floridian who struggles with credit card bills, business debts and other obligations, you’re probably desperate for a way out of your predicament.
Florida Debt Consolidation Options
Fortunately, you’re a prime candidate for a program of debt consolidation in Florida. From a focused program of debt management led by an experienced credit counselor to a powerful debt negotiation plan that could help you avoid a bankruptcy filing, you’re virtually certain to find a plan that could stop your personal debt crisis in its tracks.
Florida Debt Management
If your debts consist primarily of high-interest credit card bills, consider getting in touch with a Florida credit counselor. These professionals are trained to work in close concert with your credit card issuers to reduce the interest rates on your outstanding debts.
When you enroll in a credit counseling program in Florida, you’ll be presented with a debt management plan that’s designed to work within your budget. Along with your newly-reduced interest rates, you’ll receive budgeting suggestions that could keep your finances on track for years to come.
One of the biggest drawbacks of your Florida debt management plan is likely to be its duration. Some credit counselors have been known to draw up plans that take as long as seven years to complete. If that’s not acceptable to you, you may wish to look at some other Florida debt relief options.
Debt Consolidation Loans in Florida
If your debt load is larger than $10,000, you might qualify for a debt consolidation loan. These credit facilities are designed to pay off your existing creditors and roll your debts into an easy-to-understand loan. Instead of dealing with multiple banks and credit card companies, you’ll have just a single lender to pay off each month.
If your credit score is above 600, your Florida debt consolidation loan might carry a far lower interest rate than your disparate credit card bills. However, these loans aren’t ideal for folks who have poor credit. Most consolidation lenders don’t take chances on borrowers with sub-prime credit scores.
Even if you can find a willing lender, you might find it difficult to afford your loan. Many sub-prime debt consolidation loans come with interest rates of 15 percent or more. While Florida consolidation loans are great for debtors with solid credit, you’ll need to crunch some numbers to ensure that you don’t take on an expensive new obligation.
Florida Debt Negotiation Plans
If you decide that a debt consolidation loan isn’t for you, you have another option: debt settlement, also known as debt arbitration or debt negotiation. Debt settlement is a powerful form of debt relief that’s often described as a prime alternative to bankruptcy. You can resolve your debt problems without filing bankruptcy.
After enrolling in a program of Florida debt settlement, you’ll stop paying your existing creditors and use your savings to establish an escrow account. Meanwhile, your debt negotiation team will work to convince your creditors to accept reductions in the principal balances on your debts. While no case is typical, these reductions could slash your total debt package by thousands.
Once all of your debts have been settled, you’ll make a lump-sum payment out of your escrow account and begin a new chapter in your financial life. It’s important to note that this process will temporarily damage your credit score. However, this damage won’t be as deep or long-lasting as any theoretical post-bankruptcy hit to your credit score.
Take charge of your life and investigate your Florida debt relief options today.