If you feel overwhelmed by your debts and don’t know which way to turn, one good option is consumer credit counseling or as it is sometimes called non-profit debt management.
What is non-profit debt management
Many credit counseling agencies that offer help with debt management are non-profits. They can be non-profits because corporations such as banks and credit card companies or colleges, universities, the military, credit unions or other similar organizations fund them. The U.S. government even offers credit counseling through its Cooperative Extension Service.
Non-profit doesn’t necessarily mean free
Just because an organization is a non-profit doesn’t mean it necessarily offers its services free or that it’s legitimate. Some non-profit credit counseling organizations charge high fees that they try to hide or might urge you to make “voluntary” contributions that can actually cause you to have more debt.
What to look for
If you’re deeply in debt, non-profit debt management via credit counseling can be a real lifesaver. However, there are some things to look out for that will tell you whether the agency is legitimate or a scam.
For example, reputable counseling agencies will advise you about money management and help you develop a budget. They often provide educational materials and workshops at no cost. A legitimate credit counseling service will talk to you about all your finances in detail and help you create a plan to deal with your debt. It should also send you information about itself and the services it offers without first asking you to provide information about your finances.
Make a list
Before you jump into credit counseling, make a list of the agencies that interest you. Then check out each one with the office of your state’s attorney general and with local consumer protection agencies. This will tell you if there has been complaints made about any of the agencies you’re considering. You might also check with the the U.S. Trustee Program as it has a list of counseling agencies that have been approved for pre-bankruptcy counseling.
Your next step should be to ask questions of each of the agencies you’ve “short listed” to determine which organization might be best for you. You should ask what services each offers and look for one that has a range of services such as budget counseling and debt management classes. You should ask if it has free educational materials that could help you do a better job of managing your money and will it help you develop a plan for avoiding financial problems in the future? You definitely should ask about its fees and what you could do if you can’t afford to pay them. Ask for a written agreement or contract and don’t sign anything that you haven’t first read. Make sure the agency is licensed to provide credit counseling in your state and ask about the qualifications of its counselors.
An alternative to non-profit debt management that many people have chosen is debt settlement. This is where our counselors negotiate with your creditors to get your debts reduced – often by thousands of dollars. We provide our clients with payment plans that enable them to become debt free in 24 to 48 months depending, of course, on the size of their debt.
One affordable payment
When you choose National Debt Relief, you’ll have only one affordable payment to make a month. We can help you get out of debt without having to take out a debt consolidation loan, which means you don’t need to have an excellent credit score to qualify.
Chat with us now to learn how we could help you manage your debt or call our toll-free number for more information.