The above graph presents a single anomaly which occurred in 2005. During that time there was a severe drop in average credit card debt, despite total outstanding revolving debt continuing to rise. This outlier was likely due to the spike in bankruptcy filings in the United States around that time. A law went into effect at the end of 2005 which made it more difficult for individuals to declare bankruptcy. This resulted in a rush of filings before the law's deadline - over 2 million Americans had their debts forgiven that year due to these filings.

Debts owed by governments and private corporations may be rated by rating agencies, such as Moody's, Standard & Poor's, Fitch Ratings, and A. M. Best. The government or company itself will also be given its own separate rating. These agencies assess the ability of the debtor to honor his obligations and accordingly give him or her a credit rating. Moody's uses the letters Aaa Aa A Baa Ba B Caa Ca C, where ratings Aa-Caa are qualified by numbers 1-3. S&P and other rating agencies have slightly different systems using capital letters and +/- qualifiers. Thus a government or corporation with a high rating would have Aaa rating.


Second, credit card debt is considered variable interest debt, which means the interest rate can change. For example, if the Federal Reserve raises interest rates, the interest rate on your credit card debt can increase. That means you may pay more money each month to repay your credit card debt. In contrast, a personal loan is a fixed interest loan, so you pay the same, fixed amount each month regardless of changes in interest rates, which is more predictable.
Debt relief is an opportunity to put your credit card debt behind you without paying the full amount owed. Our debt experts negotiate with your creditors to get them to agree to settle for less than the full amount you owe, so you can resolve your debt for less and in less time than other debt solutions. Check out a Freedom Debt Relief review from our partners at Bills.com for more information.
While you’re at it, contact your credit card companies about lowering your interest rates, waiving fees, or both. Competition among lenders for reliable borrowers is fierce. As a result, says a year-old study by CreditCards.com, some 80% of customers who request a break get one — especially if they threaten to stop using their cards, and shift their balances to one of those zero-interest cards mentioned above.

2. Associated fees. Depending on the type of loan or the bank you apply at, there may be hidden fees such as an origination fee, processing fee, or an early repayment fee. Banks expect to make money off you from the interest you pay over a period of time. Paying off your loan early will deny them that interest, so they may hit you with an extra charge. You should be aware and ask about any associated fees when applying for your loan.
Will creditor or collection calls get reduced? Most likely. They will mainly communicate with your consolidation company. Most likely. All communication will primarily be done via a settlement company. Yes. Debt management company will communicate on your behalf. Yes. But make sure you keep paying every month. Yes. Creditors are barred from collection efforts after you file.

Debt settlement is a debt relief option that focuses on getting you out of debt for a percentage of what you owe. It’s also commonly called debt negotiation because you negotiate to only pay back a portion of the outstanding balance. In exchange, the creditor or collector discharges whatever is left. As a result, debt settlement is often the fastest, cheapest way to get out of debt without declaring bankruptcy for many consumers.


Although credit is convenient when you do not have the money, it places a great burden on your future finances. Suppose that you bought some new furniture for $1000.00 on a credit card. The lender usually will ask you to pay only 5% of the total amount per month, which is around $51.39 Dollars per month. It will take 24 months to pay off the loan at 21% annual interest. At the end of the two years, you will have paid $1,233.26 Dollars, including $233.26 in interest.

“Chase is committed to providing customers who are experiencing financial hardships with the right solutions based on their individual situation,” said Chase Bank media relations officer Lauren Francis. “We encourage customers to call us to discuss options that may be available to them including but not limited to payment arrangements, payment programs, and debt settlements.”
When you’re wading in a sea of debt, it can feel overwhelming to stay afloat. This debt consolidation calculator is designed to help determine if debt consolidation is right for you. Fill in your outstanding loan amounts, credit card balances and other debt. Then see what the monthly payment would be with a consolidated loan. Try adjusting the terms, loan types or rate until you find a debt consolidation plan that fits your goals and budget.
If you know your current credit cards' APRs, it should be simple to identify a new credit card that offers both (1) a lower APR and (2) an ability to transfer existing balances. If you can earn approval for a new credit card that meets both conditions, you will want to ask the card issuer about any fees associated with a balance transfer: sometimes fees are based on the number of balances you transfer while other fees may be based on the dollar amount of the balances that you transfer. Understand what your particular balance transfer strategy will cost you before you commit to consolidating your debt through a balance transfer.
Quicken lets you create a debt payoff plan that prioritizes debts with the highest interest rates so you save money. You can link your accounts and allow Quicken to automatically pull your minimum payment and current interest rate, or you can manually enter the information from your monthly billing statements. As a bonus, you can also access your credit score to see how paying off your debt is helping to improve your credit. Quicken Deluxe is $29.99 per year and is available for both Windows and MacOS.
If you have a lot of debt at a high interest rate, the best way to get out of debt is probably debt consolidation with a personal loan. This strategy involves applying for a personal loan with a lower fixed interest rate and paying off all your existing debts with the loan proceeds. From there, you can focus on repaying all your debt with a single personal loan that has a much lower APR.
Before you can enroll in a debt management program, you must qualify based on your income. If have enough money to handle your monthly expenses, you qualify. If your debts are too much for you pay down with your income, debt settlement or bankruptcy may be recommended by a credit counselor. If you do qualify based on your debt balances and income, your creditors still must accept proposals made by the credit counseling agency.
Negotiating with a collection agency or junk debt buyer is somewhat similar to negotiating with a credit card company or other original creditor. However, many collection agencies (or junk debt buyers) will agree to take less of the owed amount than the original creditor, because the junk debt buyer has purchased the debt for a fraction of the original balance.[3] As a part of the settlement, the consumer can request that collection is removed from the credit report, which is generally not the case with the original creditor. Even if the collection account has been removed from the consumer credit report as a condition of settlement, as agreed during negotiations, the negative marks from the original credit card company will still remain, according to Maxine Sweet, a spokeswoman for credit reporting agency Experian.[4]
Balance transfer credit card: Another way to self-manage debt is to get a low or 0% annual percentage rate (APR) balance transfer credit card. To qualify, your credit scores usually need to be 670 or higher, but the savings can be tremendous. If the APR on a credit card with a balance of $8,000 is 26%, and you delete it in 15 months at zero interest, the accumulated interest you'd save would be $1,456. Use a balance transfer credit card, pay it off within the same time frame, and the only extra charge you'd pay would be a transfer fee (typically 3% of the transferred amount) of $240.
Talk to a nonprofit debt counseling company about a debt management plan that allows you to pay your credit cards in full, but with a reduced interest rate, or with fees waived, or both. Because they know their mutual clients are being coached through difficult times with honorable intentions, credit card companies work hand-in-glove with credit counselors to offer you an affordable monthly payment that eliminates debt in 3-5 years.

Finding the right company to work with can feel overwhelming. Therefore, it is important that the right amount of time and research be given to allow yourself the opportunity to work with a company who will recognize the wisdom behind making such a financial decision while offering professional courtesy and encouragement. Fortunately, there are multiple reputable companies that provide these services.
Open a balance transfer card with 0% interest or a personal loan. It may seem counter-intuitive to take out another credit card, but balance transfer cards – which offer 0% interest for an initial period – can help you save money on interest, providing flexibility to pay down debt, Schulz notes. Personal loans, which offer a structured repayment plan, can also be helpful.
To get started with Accredited Debt Relief, you'll need to enter your first and last name, email address, state of residence, phone number, and the amount of debt you're looking to manage (from $1 to over $100,000). You'll receive a call from one of ADR's representatives, and you are asked to have a recent copy of your credit scores and credit reports on hand to prepare for the discussion. You can get that information for free on the page after you enter the information described above, by clicking on the “Get My Free Credit Scores Now” button. During the phone call, the debt specialist will go through your credit profile, to get a feel for your situation and help you to understand the available options.
Debt relief programs at ACCC are designed to help you take control of your finances and make a plan to pay off your debts. In your first conversation with our expert credit counselors, we'll evaluate your financial situation to get a clear picture of what you owe and how best to pay it off. Then we'll work with you to create a workable budget – something you can live with, but one that will help you make significant progress toward your goal of being debt-free.
Coming up with a plan for paying off debt may sound difficult, especially if you don’t have a financial background. But spreadsheets simplify the task, making it easy for anyone who can use a spreadsheet to make a plan to pay off debt. The snowball method is a popular strategy, and downloading one of these debt snowball spreadsheets can help you reduce your debt.
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