Credit Help - The Negatives


by Kevin Sanders

We would love to be able to say that it doesn't happen. We would love to say that all credit counseling agencies and debt management providers are 100% dedicated to you, their clients. In fact, it would be a lot easier for us at Bankruptcy Relief Network if this was true. But the fact is, you should always be aware when seeking outside help. Do not fear seeking outside help, but definitely stay aware of the possibilities.

Beware Of False Promises
Although we do state average client results on our website, we are the first to admit that our program is not for everybody. As a policy, we never over-promise what we can do. Some credit counselors, however, whether non-profit or for-profit, make promises that they cannot keep, but you will not be aware of until quite late in the game.

Many of our clients come to us after a bad experience with one of these agencies, and although we are always willing to help, the damage done by these unscrupulous agencies could have been avoided.

Another thing to be careful of is when counselors or other agencies ask for large sums of money up-front. It is generally not necessary for you to post a large sum of money in order to have an agency accept your case, unless you have a very extreme case. Try contacting another agency (or, indeed, Bankruptcy Relief Network), to ensure that there are other options. When it comes to your personal debt situation, it is always better to be safe than sorry.

Credit Repair Facts
It's unfortunate, but our industry is frequently tarred with the same reputational brush as so-called credit repair providers and agencies calling themselves credit doctors. What these agencies generally do is promise to remove negative credit information from your credit history for an upfront fee.

We at BRN give a severe warning about these services! The truth here is that accurate credit information simply cannot be changed. While many try, credit history is inevitably impossible to hide.

However, it is possible to have information deleted from your credit report if it is outdated or incorrect. Your local credit bureau can help you with this.

Refinancing - Always Keep The Risk Low
Despite numerous pleas for your "debt consolidation loan" or "home equity loan" business, it is best to understand that there is a time and a place for debt consolidation loans.

If, for example, you are finding yourself in considerable financial trouble, and do not have the income resources to manage your current debt, we always discourage attempting to obtain such a loan.

The reason behind this is that if you are having trouble with, say, credit card debt, which is unsecured, a debt consolidation loan or second mortgage does not actually decrease that debt, and in fact secures that debt to your home. What this does is greatly increase the risk that you may lose your home if you miss numerous payments.

If, however, you have determined that a debt consolidation loan is probably your best option, beware of refinancing that is at a high interest, or requires a large upfront fee. As with everything, debt consolidation loans are buyer-beware.

(Kevin Sanders is a BRN counselor with over 10 years experience in the credit industry.)

Mini Article Index
About Bankruptcy - the machinery behind bankruptcy.
Are You Deep In Debt - a questionnaire.
New Year's Debt Resolution - break the cycle today.
Credit Help Negatives - some must-to-avoids.
Managing Secured Debt - an important primer.
Seeking Outside Help - what you should know.

Bankruptcy Relief Network
501 W Broadway Plaza A
San Diego, CA
(619) 599-0316

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