Best Resources for Debt Settlement Advice

You cannot always count on a debt settlement lender to give you the best debt settlement advice. These advisers and companies have a personal interest at stake when they are handling your debt settlement process. You will need to develop some level of trust with your new lender in order to go through with a contract. To help you with this process, you may benefit from seeking outside resources to determine if what your lenders are telling you are really the best options.

Federal Trade Commission

The Federal Trade Commission can offer sound advice on discerning between honest debt settlement companies and those looking to profit at your expense. The FTC does not offer direct consumer services to you. However, the FTC does have a knowledge of some techniques, such as up front fees or undisclosed costs, that debt settlement and credit consolidation lenders may attempt. Find the FTC online debt page for more information to assist you.

Non Profit Credit Management Companies

Non profit credit management companies are not always ethical. In fact, many of these companies are still looking to profit by offering you less than sound settlement advice. However, since the company is a registered non profit, it must disclose certain information to the public each year. This information includes how it charges clients and how it spends the money it earns each year. You can find all of this information on a public record lookup for a non profit organization. With this knowledge, you will be able to learn if the fees are reasonable or unreasonable, and if the company is truly acting to help consumers by keeping rates and salaries low or charging high rates in order to pay itself high salaries despite netting a zero profit.

National Foundation for Credit Counseling

This agency supports responsible borrowing through two key areas: education and counseling. If you are wondering what size settlement loan you can afford, how settlement will affect your credit, if you should elect settlement over bankruptcy or other important questions, you can take classes and get information from the NFCC. Learning how debt is legally structured and the impact of your potential settlement will allow you to decide which options are right for you moving forward. You will even find guidelines for selecting a good credit counseling agent readily available on the NFCC's website.

Attorneys and Accountants 

If you would like to use your personal resources for credit counseling, the best individuals to consult will be your accountant or attorney. An accountant can help you learn to budget for the settlement and advise you on the best financial decisions moving forward. An attorney will be necessary to review any settlement contract, however, in most states. An attorney is the only person who is certified to ensure your contract has no holes and will actually succeed in relieving you of all future obligation to the debt. When working toward your own settlement, at least consult an attorney when you have a contract prepared.

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