Where to Find Expert Debt Settlement Advice
The wonderful thing about the internet is that it puts a wealth of information at our fingertips — meaning there is a lot of information floating around about debt and the process of settling it. The catch is that there can be a seemingly overwhelming amount of information to wade through at times. Plus, it’s not always easy to know which sources to trust when it comes to finding helpful, legitimate advice on the debt settlement process.
If you want to learn more about debt settlement but are still figuring out where to find such advice, here are some tips for getting started.
Where Can You Find Expert Debt Settlement Advice?
There are a few key places to begin looking for debt relief advice online — whether you’re trying to find out more about how the process works in general or are evaluating specific companies before enrolling.
Third-Party Review Sites
Third-party review sites act as hubs for consumers who have undergone debt settlement to leave their ratings and reviews, as well as to add additional details about their personal experience.
Anytime you’re considering a financial decision, from buying a car at a certain dealership to signing up for a debt settlement program, it helps to hear feedback about the experience straight from those who have already done it.
In addition to providing detailed breakdowns about specific debt settlement programs, these sites often cover the pros and cons of pursuing settlement. Knowing both the potential upsides and downsides is an important part of making informed decisions.
For instance, here are some of the pros and cons outlined by Magnify Money in their debt settlement guide:
- Pro: You may be able to reduce the total amount you owe on your balances.
- Pro: You may be able to avoid bankruptcy by settling.
- Con: Debt settlement programs can charge costly fees for successful settlements.
- Con: Creditors may be willing to negotiate with you but are not required to do so.
There are many third-party review sites out there worth reading through to gain a deeper understanding of the settlement process and how different programs stack up.
The American Fair Credit Council
The American Fair Credit Council, or the AFCC, is known as the “watchdog” of the industry. Not only does it break down what to expect from the journey in its “Debt Settlement 101” section, but it also contains a list of member organizations that adhere to a strict set of consumer protection standards.
Accredited member organizations, like Freedom Financial Network — co-founded by AFCC board member Andrew Housser and Brad Stroh — must adhere to a code of conduct and regulatory guidelines. The AFCC audits these organizations to ensure these standards are met. So, this list is a good place to begin when you’re looking for a reputable settlement organization with which to work.
Tips for Vetting Debt Settlement Advice
Good debt settlement advice is straightforward and honest. Be wary of any advice that glosses over the possible risks and outcomes associated with this strategy. Debt settlement scammers will often try to make it seem like quick, easy way to get out of debt with no real risk or effort involved. While this strategy has helped thousands of Americans escape major debt for lesser amounts than they originally owed, there is no such thing as a guarantee that any certain outcome will occur.
Avoiding scams and being prepared for the process start to finish are two of the major reasons why it’s so important to find solid sources of expert debt settlement advice before taking action. Third-party review sites and the AFCC are two possible wellsprings of quality information.
A debt consolidation loan is available to clear off existing liabilities at a lower interest rate. In this kind of loan, the borrower repays all high-interest debts with a single substantial loan and repays the latter to reduce overall accumulated debt.