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Four Things to Know About Debt Consolidation

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If you feel as if your life has been taken over by your debit, then it is time to start looking into different debt relief options. Debt is all too common in the U.S., as the average American family with debt carries $15,355 in credit card debt and $129,579 in total debt.

Debt consolidation programs, often known as debt management consolidation, are meant to get you back on track with credit card bills, home mortgage payments, and other debts. If you need help paying off your creditors, it can be beneficial to enroll in one of these programs, but there are many myths in the industry that can deter you from joining. In order to prevent this confusion, here are four things you must know about debt consolidation.

1. The payment is structured under a third party payment system
This means that you pay one lump sum to your debt management firm, and in return, they handle paying off your debts for you. This is a great option if you feel bogged down by bills and are confused with juggling different accounts. It is important to realize that these firms do not pay for you, but rather pay on your behalf. Often they are given much lower interest rates than a personal account would receive. They will distribute your monthly contribution among your accounts until they are all paid in full.

2. You should start with counseling
Before consolidation, it is important that you learn how to become fiscally responsible. At the very least, you will come out of these sessions being able to balance a checkbook and keep your bills in order.

3. It is not the right method for everyone
As a rule of thumb, those applying for debt consolidation should primarily have unsecured debts, such as credit cards and personal loans. If your debts include tax debt, unpaid child support, or even old parking tickets, a consolidation counselor will not be able to help you as those payments have specific federal and state laws to adhere by.

4. You are still held accountable
Signing up for a debt consolidation program does not mean your counselor will handle everything. You will be held accountable to monitor and send in your account statements, and to stay in consistent communication with your counselor in order to come out of the process completely debt free.

Think this method to consolidate your debts is right for you? Contact one of our credit counselors today.

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