Debt Settlement Solution or Scam?

by: admin Monday, February 1st, 2010

Question: Dear Financial Adviser,

I have a handful of credit cards that total about $23,000 in credit card debt.  Until recently, I have always paid my bills on time. Just recently, I received a letter from a debt relief company. I placed a phone call to them and they said I likely qualify for a “debt settlement program,” but I wasn’t sure if this was a good solution for my debt or a scam. I’m not sure if this kind of debt relief is in my best interest. I own a home, but I do not have any equity in my home to use for debt consolidation.  What is your financial advice for eliminating my credit card debt?   Thank you. — Tina

Response: Dear Tina,

Thanks for your letter regarding debt settlement. I want you to understand that there are many options for confronting debt and that the best solution depends on your needs and goals. Debt settlement is becoming a popular form of from debt relief!  Carrying that much credit card debt in a tight credit and job market can lead to additional financial pitfalls, so you need to take control of your finances quickly.  Since you have no equity, you can would be unable to use your home as collateral for consolidating credit card debt with a debt consolidation loan or mortgage refinancing.


What appeals to most consumers about debt settlement is that they can eliminate their debt faster and actually pay back less than what is owed. Unfortunately, the there have been some shady of debt settlement companies promise financial solutions that they do not deliver.  According to the Federal Trade Commission, these companies either go out of business or run a scam for the consumer’s money.  A good debt settlement will help you escape credit card debt quicker and will outline a plan for you to be debt free within a year or two.  Finding a debt settlement company with a good record is vital.  You need to have peace of mind each month that you are working with a trusted company for debt relief.

Does debt settlement affect your credit negatively?
Yes in most cases debt settlement will temporarily hinder your credit scores during the months you are building your account for the debt negotiations.  Consumer credit counseling and bankruptcy will also harm your credit, but typically consumers can repair their credit quicker with debt settlement.

As soon as you have the ability, I recommend starting a savings plan. Saving even a little bit each pay-period enables you to stop using your credit cards for the unexpected expenses that can arise frequently. Saving is essential to grow your wealth and prevent consumer debt. Check with your bank to set up an automatic transfer to savings via payroll deduction or direct deposit.

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3 Responses to “Debt Settlement Solution or Scam?”

Does Debt Settlement Harm Your Credit? | Debt Relief News Said:

[...] the complete article > Debt Settlement Solution or Scam? The debt relief article was written by Jeff Morris from the US Debt Relief Firm. Share and [...]

Comment made on February 1st, 2010 at 11:30 am
Settle Credit Card Debt Said:

Thank you! I have always like your debt articles and i hear good things about your debt solutions. I would like to partner with you on some new debt relief programs. Please email me and let me know if you would consider us as a debt settlement affiliate.

Comment made on April 25th, 2010 at 7:11 pm
Single Mother Scholarships Said:

There are some interesting time limits in this article however I don’t know if I see all of them heart to heart. There may be some validity however I’ll take hold opinion till I look into it further. Good article , thanks and we would like more! Added to FeedBurner as properly

Comment made on January 19th, 2011 at 10:58 pm

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