Debt Relief Reviews - Five Star Reviews or BBB A+ Ratings?
If you are struggling with credit cards and other unsecured debts, you may be searching for the highest reviewed debt relief programs or plans that are available. First of all, it is very important to understand that no two debt situations are exactly the same, so it's key to select the debt relief or debt resolution program that is best designed to meet your specific needs. Whether you select a four-star or five-star company, the wisest move of all may be to select a company that has earned a BBB A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau as that rating generally is the primary indication of a company's true commitment to customer satisfaction. It's also a positive sign that the company has been successful at fulfilling a customer's expectations.
Get a free debt relief analysis and savings estimate from a BBB A+ accredited debt relief provider. Learn about available debt relief options and the benefits of a debt relief plan.
Oklahoma residents, like many people across the country, often find themselves struggling with high interest credit cards and other unsecured debts such as store cards, gas cards, medical bills, doctor bills and more. If this is your situation, you may be searching for information regarding debt management programs, or debt management plans (DMPs) coordinated by credit counselors or debt counselors. You may also be considering alternative debt relief options such as debt settlement, debt negotiation, or even bankruptcy. Regardless of your current debt situation, it's important to understand the clear distinctions between these debt options and how they can each help provide relief for consumers experiencing financial hardships.
Credit Counselors Customize Debt Management Plans for Individuals and Families
The objective of a debt management or credit counseling program is to take each one of your credit cards and other unsecured debts and combine or "consolidate" them all into a single, more manageable payment each month. Created with the help of a credit or debt counselor, by requesting and being granted the benefits of debt relief such as lower interest rates and the waiving of late fees and penalties, a debt management plan is designed to help consumers save a substantial amount of money and get out of debt at an accelerated pace.
If you are experiencing a financial hardship and need to explore your debt relief options, you can get your free debt relief evaluation and savings estimate at no obligation.
How are debt management plans (DMPs) customized to the indivduals needs of consumers? Credit or debt counselors will typically speak personally with you to get key information regarding the financial hardship you are experiencing and verify how much debt you are facing. They will then gain a clear understanding of your income level as well as how much money you can realistically designate each month to pay down or payoff your debts. Finally, they will design a customized debt management plan (DMP) that calls for you to temporarily cease using credit cards and make one consolidated payment each month to the credit-counseling agency. Those monies will then be distributed to creditors one by one. It's important to understand that, before this plan can be put in place, the plan must be submitted to creditors requesting that they agree to extend the benefits of debt relief to the consumer in need. These benefits can include:
- Lowering Monthly Payments
- Reducing Interest Rates
- Waiving of Late Fees and Penalties
- Consolidating or combining debts into a single, more manageable, monthly payment
- Helping you save substantial money and allowing you to get out of debt in less time than you could on your own if you were to continue paying only the monthly minimum month after month at higher interest rates.
Creditors who understand that you are truly experiencing a financial hardship may be more open to agree to the proposals submitted by credit or debt counselors. Upon their acceptance of proposals, they are then added to the debt management plan. For creditors who do not agree to extend the benefits of debt relief, you are still obligated according to the original terms of your cardholder agreements.
Credit counseling agencies, through certified credit counselors or debt counselors, also provide a variety of additional debt relief services including help with budgeting, developing good spending habits, financial education and more. Truly outstanding debt relief or credit counseling agencies will always include a strong educational facet to their program. They will not only help you get out of debt, they will also help you come to grips with the root cause of the debt crisis and provide access to the tools necessary to put the cycle of debt behind you for good.
Debt Management Is a Proven Path to Save Money
Debt management or credit counseling is a tried and true method for debt relief that has helped many individuals and families, but it's important to know that debt management requires a certain amount of discipline and restraint to avoid credit cards. It also requires you to make on-time consolidated payments month after month, and an overall dedication to "stay the course" and complete a program that typically takes three to five years before debts are completely resolved and your debt-free day arrives!
That may seem like a long time, but once you see debts begin to be reduced as you make timely payments month after month and stop using your credit cards, your debt free day arrives before you know it! Ask anyone who has stayed with a debt relief plan and experienced the life-changing benefits first hand.
The bottom line: Debt relief does not make debts magically go away but it has provided welcome relief and helped countless individuals and families escape the debt treadmill and get on the path to a life of financial restraint, discipline, and even freedom!
State Programs for Low-Income Families
While debt relief programs help many Americans during times of financial hardship, some people may also benefit from state-assisted programs and services to help them pay for utility bills, grocery bills, or childcare. Examples of such programs include Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), Oklahoma Medicaid, and Oklahoma Head Start, among others. To find out more about these services designed for low-income families and individuals, regardless of their debt situation, go to the state's homepage Benefits section.
Understanding Debt Relief Alternatives to Debt Consolidation or Debt Management
An alternative debt relief option to debt management through credit counseling is debt settlement. Debt settlement or debt negotiation is typically utilized by individuals and families who have high interest, high-balance credit card debt – individuals who may even be considering bankruptcy. It is a more aggressive form of debt relief that has helped consumers get out of credit card debt faster, assuming monies can be "set aside" to build up a "lump sum" amount that can later be used to extend a settlement offer to creditors. It's important to understand the difference between debt settlement and debt management: With debt management you are actually paying off everything you owe, but saving money through much lower interest rates and a waiving of late fees and penalties. The objective of debt settlement is to "settle" with credit card companies for substantially less than is currently owed.
Why would credit card companies consider "settling" with consumers? If credit card companies decide eventually to "sell off" accounts that are 60 to 90 days late, or more, to a third-party collector, creditors may realize as little as 10 cents on the dollar. So, it stands to reason that credit card companies may be agreeable to accept a reasonable settlement offer made by you or by a debt settlement company negotiating on your behalf. It is important to be aware that when consumers default on their credit card agreements in order to set aside money in a settlement fund, creditors may threaten or take legal action. In addition, money saved through credit card settlements are subject to federal taxes. Finally, debt settlement will likely have a negative impact on personal credit, but not as serious or long lasting of an impact as personal bankruptcy.
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