North Carolina - Debt Relief Options
From sea-to-shining sea and across the USA, Americans are feeling the economic pinch. In North Carolina and states nationwide, citizens are hurting from the burden of high-interest credit cards and painful debt that refuses to go away. Many falling victim to this growing trend would agree, they are prime candidates for debt relief.
As savvy consumers know, relief has come - and in various forms - from credit card debt consolidation - a type of debt management plan (DMP) put together in a custom way by a credit counseling agency, or in the form of debt settlement - a method of debt relief which may allow the consumer to settle for less than the amount owed.
To find out what debt relief could do for you, you can receive a free debt analysis and savings evaluation here.
Consumer Debt Relief Programs
As banks and other companies have benefitted from U.S. government bailouts and federally-funded debt relief, there's a popularly-held, yet flawed, belief that consumers may also benefit from some form of government bailout.
Although many consumers would eagerly embrace such government debt relief stimulus programs, companies that report these as real and functioning, are perpetuating a scam. But merely because such programs do not exist does not mean there aren't debt relief options available to consumers. On the contrary, consumers who face credit card and other forms of unsecured debt problems, can and do benefit from a diverse array of proven debt relief programs.
And while Uncle Sam is certainly not bailing-out everyday people, many credit card companies are extending debt relief to struggling consumers -- in the form of reduced interest rates, removal of late fees and penalties, or even settling credit card debt for much less than the total amount owed.
Find out how you might benefit from debt relief. Answer a few simple questions about your financial situation and get a no-obligation free savings quote and debt relief analysis.
Credit Card Debt Relief Options
Bankruptcy is considered by many to be the debt relief of last resort. Its upside is obvious, providing the debt relief seeker with a "clean slate" and allowing the individual using this option to essentially begin anew. Its downside is not as inspiring. A bankruptcy can take up to ten years to stop negatively affecting credit and the ability to secure any new credit. It can and does affect a person's ability to qualify for a home mortgage. It casts a long shadow. In addition, new bankruptcy laws passed in 2005 have made qualification for bankruptcy more difficult. Filers seeking Chapter 7 Bankruptcy must go through a "means test". North Carolinans choosing this "straight" bankruptcy must also earn less income than the median or average for a family equal in size to theirs.
So there are hurdles when taking the bankruptcy route. The encouraging news is that in addition to bankruptcy, consumers have other effective debt relief solutions and options available.
Credit Counseling - Debt Management
One of the most favored alternatives to bankruptcy is accomplished through debt management techniques provided by credit counseling agencies. Credit counselors working closely with the consumer help "consolidate" or "combine" the high-interest, unsecured debt including credit cards, medical bills, utility bills, gas cards, retail cards and cell phone bills. The debt relief objective is to combine all individual consumer bills into one lower monthly payment. The agency in-turn makes payment amounts to each credit card or unsecured debt holder and does so until each company balance - card, service or otherwise is paid off.
Other important things make-up the credit counseling agency services. They will, acting on the debtor's behalf, negotiate with credit card and unsecured debt holders in the hopes of lowering interest rates, removing of penalty and late fees, and generally making it more affordable for the debtor to service and ultimately succeed with full debt relief. It's vital the credit counseling agency understand the debtors' income, expenses (all), and how much the debtor can comfortably afford to pay on all his or her outstanding and burdensome, unsecured debt. To facilitate the process, the agency then creates a Debt Management Plan (DMP) for the debtor in which each creditor on the program is included. As soon as each creditor agrees to the proposed monthly amounts the debtor can pay, the plan is implemented with the goal of reaching full payment of debt, generally in a 3 to 5 year timeframe.
You can, with no obligation, get your own free debt analysis and savings quote to find out what debt relief may do for you. Just answer a few brief online questions.
Credit Card Debt Settlement
Increasingly, as the economy toughens and money to pay debt gets even harder to come by, many consumers are choosing Debt Settlement. Unlike the credit counseling scenario in which a debtor pays back all that is owed albeit with more favorable terms, Debt Settlement seeks to "settle" outstanding balances for less than what is fully-owed, often much less. Once a debtor chooses this debt-relief option, that person stops making all credit card and other unsecured monthly debt payments. Instead the money is put into a "settlement account" which will be used to accumulate a lump sum amount that can be used to make a settlement "offer" to credit card companies. Increasingly, especially during difficult times, many credit card companies may prefer the lump sum settlement offer rather than have to sell-off the debt to a third party debt collector - often for as low as ten cents on the dollar. The credit card companies may decide that they'll make more and lose less, by agreeing to a lump sum deal orchestrated by a debt-settlement or debt negotiation company working on the consumer's behalf -- or, in some cases, settlement offers made directly by consumers themselves.
A final thought on debt relief options is that every consumer should fully and clearly understand the money saving benefits associated with any debt relief program. This includes time frame to accomplish the projected goals. Keep in mind that debt relief typically will have a negative effect on personal credit and future ability to get new credit, and, in the case of settlement, credit card companies may sue or threaten to sue consumers who default on the terms of the credit card agreements.
In the final analysis, while debt settlement will normally hurt one's credit and can lead to legal action -- debt settlement has become an increasingly popular debt relief solution for consumers who don't qualify for bankruptcy or may not want to declare bankruptcy -- but desperately need to get out of debt and regain control of finances.
To receive a free debt relief analysis and savings evaluation, get started by answering a few questions online.