Consumer Credit Counseling
They are the well-known names, the highly-recognized faces, the well-known personal financial experts. Suze Orman, whose thought-provoking advice is followed by millions via cable television, countless books, guest appearances, and speaking engagements. Orman, on-record as a proponent of consumer counseling agencies, believes some debt situations are best served by going the consumer credit counseling (CCCS) route. She is everywhere these days and arguably one of the best.
Clark Howard, a well-known and highly respected financial authority. Respected and trusted by many Americans, Howard's advice brings clarity, credibility and candor to complicated personal finance issues.
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With an economy in free-fall and millions struggling to pick up the pieces of their financial lives, the demand for consumer credit counseling reviews has never been bigger. The good news is, consumers in debt have many available options--including debt consolidation, debt settlement, or even bankruptcy.
What Is Consumer Credit Counseling?
Seems obvious, but what exactly is consumer credit counseling? The goal of credit counseling is to allow the consumer to pay the entire debt amount, in a way that is, typically, more affordable and more convenient. It is also an approach which seeks better payment terms, including the lowering of interest rates charged, the waiving and forgiveness of certain fees and penalties, the consolidation of unsecured debt and perhaps most important of all during the process: the creation of one, manageable monthly payment.
Debt Management Plan
One proven option for those seeking debt relief is credit counseling, or a debt management plan (DMP). If followed properly, this disciplined approach promises to help people struggling in debt to get off the debt treadmill at a more accelerated pace. And while degrees of success vary and won't happen for the majority of those who enter a debt management program, the opportunity is there for individuals who have the discipline to remain faithful to their debt management program.
Keep in mind that the job of credit counseling agencies is not to improve credit scores, but to help consumers reduce debts and regain control of their finances. However, while "credit counseling" notations will often appear in credit reports, individuals already deeply in debt who pay down their debt amounts AND improve their debt-to-credit-limit ratio may actually find that their credit scores improve over time.
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For those who can stay disciplined, getting out of debt is achievable. Reaching the goal means getting unsecured debt under control. Unsecured debt includes not just credit cards, but medical bills, utilities, club memberships, cellular phone bills and other debt not secured by assets or collateral. Choosing the credit counseling route also means that a structured payment is distributed on the debtor's behalf, helping to ensure that the plan and goals are adhered to. For those interested in debt consolidation, credit counseling can be a wise, efficient, and strategic plan to go with. If the consumer is faithful on a well-structured plan, the outcome is generally predictable and successful. On the other hand, if the consumers does not adhere to the plan, results will not be achieved and, in fact, creditors may revoke benefits that have been previously granted such as lower interest rates. The lesson is: If you get on a debt management plan via a credit counseling service, STICK TO THE PLAN, set aside the predetermined amount you need each month to be successful. In doing so, you can get off the debt-for-life treadmill, and in the end, this can save you a considerable amount of money and stress.
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