I fully agree with everything you said in your reply. Not worrying about one’s credit and just concentrating on the future is the wisest advice. A credit report and score are nothing more that tools that the banks try to threaten people with.
Yes, I agree with a CCCS being a good option for people, but it is not the best option for some. CCCS have just as bad a reputation as Settlement companies, and sometimes even worse. So although I do agree with your assesment, I am in disagreement that it is a better solution.
Factually, I feel if someone can afford to do CCCS then they really don’t need it all as there are other products and services that could a better job with the negativity of the CCCS.
Again, thank you for the kind words. I feel that you giving out good advice as a whole.
Wow, I wish I would have taken the time to read this email closely when Max first sent it. This is good stuff folks, more than worth the price of admission around here 😉
The only thing I might add (hehe..you knew there had to be a catch) is that resorting to any of the debt settlement companies is an AWFUL solution. Maybe CCCS is the best of the bunch but only because they are funded by the largest credit card companies in the world so they have to actually pay the credit card companies when you pay them. Aside from CCCS you are way better off to deal with the creditors directly and not involve any of the other scam or non-scam companies.
As Jae so eloquently stated below you are ASSuming that the best option for you is also the option that has the least effect on your credit score. That’s an incorrect assumption. Forget the dang score….just pretend it never existed. Just stop doing anything not related to digging yourself out of this debt-filled-hole and concentrate on making wise decisions from today forward. In a few years when you’ve been smart, honest and faithful to paying what you can and dealing with your creditors fairly (after all, we all got ourselves into this mess. It’s their product, but we bought it) you’ll be able to do whatever you want to financially.
Buying a house or a car or a whatever from a position of strength …NOT weakness (debt) is a blessing.
Don’t let the idiot collection-monkey jump up and down in your ear.
Remember this each time you talk to them
You have what they want (money)
YOU get to decide what to do with YOUR money
It’s not personal, they will say whatever it takes to rattle your nerves and make you mad (mad people make poor decisions)
You are in control of the telephone receiver – it hangs up as well as it answers 😉
The first thing you need to do is get rid of the idea that you need to have credit and that your credit is ruined. Both are so far from the truth it hurts.
Like many (and myself) I fell for the idea (trap) that you have to have credit to do anything in life. I found out the hard way, like you are doing now that that is a just a bunch of poopoo. Its a PR line created by the banks.
Banks have only two agenda:
Figure out every way possible to put you in debt; and
Figure out every way possible to keep you in debt.
It is just that simple. They have only one legal responsibility and that is to make money for their shareholders. You are definately not a repsonsibility for them.
Now as to our options. You there 4 major options you need to look at. But which one you choose has many varibles. It really is determined one what you are more comfortable with and what you can afford. But biggest requirement, and the one that ALL your decisions are based on is: You need to put a roof over your head and food in your belly for you and your family.
The options are:
1) Consumer Credit Counseling. This option is only workable if you can afford 2.5%-3% for a minimum payment. In other words, if you can’t afford minimum payments now, then this NOT the solution to you – unless you can budget effectively to be able to afford it. More in this video:
2) The “Snowball” or “Roll-up” methods. Same program different name. Basically this is good if you can budget minimum payments plus at $100 or more a month for the bills. If you can’t do that, then this is not your best method.
3) Debt Settlement. If you can’t do Consumer Credit Counseling or the “snowball” method then this is the last option before bankruptcy. There are three different types of settlement. There is a) the front fee based companies, b) the performance fee based companies, and c) doing it yourself. Try the performance fee first, but if you can’t afford that program then try the more extreme version which are the front-fee based companies, and if neither of them are good for you then doing it yourself may be the best option.
4) The last option is bankruptcy.
Don’t fool yourself. Every option has its pros and its cons. 3 out of 4 will harm your credit in some way.
Research the companies thoroughly and choose your best option.
What you ran into with the CCC is a common experience and one of the chief complaints that are levied against this industry. But as you say that is water under the bridge.
What you need to realize is the collection agency is trying to find out what your hot button is so that they then can exploit it.
When a collection agency claims that they are taking legal action against you it does not mean what your mind is telling you. It just means that they are going to be following what the law tells they can do, which is usually just more phone calls, writing letters, etc. It does not mean they are going to sue you.
If they were you would get a professional letter in the mail from an attorney. Law suits are NEVER done over the phone. SO the threat is just that a threat. They only wanted to create the effect that they did, which is to put the fear of God into you so that you pay up.
SO the first thing that you need to do (with your husband) is to take a deep breath and research and study before acting. You have pleanty of time…they don’t.