Every person who chooses to serve our country deserves the highest levels of respect for the sacrifice made for our freedom, not overwhelming veteran debt. While there are many benefits that come from serving in the armed forces, too many Veterans face debt challenges after they are finished with their years of service.
Members of the military carry enough responsibility as they are serving our country. The last thing they need to worry about is veteran debt due to complications from when they served. Unfortunately, many Veterans carry heavy financial difficulties and need to find the right options for debt relief.
By filling out the Servicemember’s Civil Relief Act form, you’ll be offered a range of benefits and protections to protect those serving in active duty, including a Servicemember Civil Relief Act credit card. But debt and other financial challenges can still be encountered during active duty and after they’ve returned home.
Factors that Contribute to Veteran Debt
Why is veteran debt such a challenge for those who have faithfully served our country? Veterans encounter unavoidable factors that are different than that of their civilian peers. If you are a Veteran, then you can probably relate to some of the common difficulties faced after leaving the armed forces:
Veterans Return with No Job in Place
After having a consistent income and support while in the military, it can be a challenge for Veterans to transition to working as a civilian. In most cases, Veterans don’t have a job lined up when their service comes to an end. It is common to have a gap in employment, which makes it hard to pay the bills since income is no longer coming in. Even if a Veteran is well-qualified to work another job, it takes time to find the right opportunities. Unfortunately, this time without income can result in debt that adds up to pay for living expenses such as rent, food, and utilities.
Moving Expenses as a Veteran
Finding a new job is just the first of many details that Veterans face. Often, the family was living on-location for the most recent military assignment. Even though the armed forces often offer benefits for relocating, there are times when moving costs can add up. If the cash isn’t available to pay for these expenses upfront, then loans for veterans to pay bills may be the only option. Unfortunately this could make veteran debt more unmanageable.
New Living Costs Build Debt
The military provides quality support to soldiers and their families. When the service comes to an end, it is common for Veterans to face new living costs. Certain benefits might go away, such as insurance coverage or provided housing. The cost of food can also go up when the Veterans don’t live near a commissary where they can access affordable groceries. These higher living costs might seem minimal, but everything adds up – especially when Veterans are living on a limited income.
Dealing with Disabilities as a Veteran
Serving in the military has risks, and some soldiers come home with disabilities that will have an effect for the rest of their lives. It doesn’t matter if Veterans are dealing with physical or mental disabilities; these problems can take a toll on the person’s ability to work. Physical challenges limit certain activities so the Veteran is unable to manage some job requirements. At the same time, mental disabilities such as PTSD can make it difficult to cope in stressful situations. Employers are often willing to work with Veterans with accommodations if needed, but these disabilities can impact the person’s earning capabilities. Limited earnings over the years can quickly increase veteran debt, making it a challenge to keep up with the cost of living.
Veterans with a Lower Ability to Work
When a Veteran can overcome disabilities or other limiting factors, they still might not have the capability to work to the extent desired. For example, some veteran debt is acquired due to the inability to deal with the constraints of full time work and only being able to manage part-time employment.
Relying on a Fixed Income as a Veteran
When the person moves from military service to retirement directly, they have a fixed income to cover all living expenses. The problem is that this income isn’t always enough for Veterans to pay for their desired lifestyle. Unless Veterans are willing to take on a supplemental job, their fixed retirement income might not be sufficient to pay for the necessary expenses.
Building Debt When a Spouse is Unemployment
Frequent relocation for military assignments can make it challenging for a Veteran’s spouse to hold a consistent job. Unemployment for military spouses is high, especially when the assignments are abroad. As a result, military families often live on one income since the spouse has limited income options to help with the financial support of the family, which can easily create veteran debt.
Debt Payment Options for Veterans
There’s no question that veteran debt is due to unique financial difficulties from deployment, frequent relocation, disability, and other limiting factors that can affect a person’s income. If you are a service member from any of the US Military branches who needs assistance with debt repayment, then it is time to explore the debt payoff options that are available and see what the best debt consolidation for veterans is. You don’t need to face the burden of debt without support from a team that understands your unique needs.
One option to consider for a debt reduction plan is to consolidate the debts into one simple payment. Often, Veterans are carrying multiple lines of credit, such as credit cards with high-interest rates. These charges can be managed more effectively by negotiating the amount owed and rolling everything into a lower-interest debt consolidation loan.
There are distinct advantages available for service members and Veterans, which is why you should discuss your military standing with the financial company assisting with your debt repayment. For example, you might qualify for lower debt-to-income requirements or longer repayment terms, depending on your circumstances. If you are looking for financing options when buying a home, then veterans financial assistance loans can be a great way to access good mortgage terms.
Every situation is unique, which is why a veteran drowning in debt should consider all debt repayment options to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of each. If you are burdened by veteran debt and need financial assistance, then it is worth a conversation to see what other debt relief programs you qualify for.