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Debt Relief – Insolvency – Bankruptcy Information » Debt Consolidation and Refinancing » Help please! What are the advantages and disadvantages of debt consolidation?

Help please! What are the advantages and disadvantages of debt consolidation?

Help please! What are the advantages and disadvantages of debt consolidation?

What is the best debt Counseling and debt consolidation services? Are there any debt or credit card consolidation services that are easy to use and secure and worth the time?


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4 Responses to "Help please! What are the advantages and disadvantages of debt consolidation?"

  1. David says:
    Debt consolidation allows you to pay down the principles of your lending obligations faster, and it offers you means to salvage fair to low credit scores in preparation for a major purchase, such as a new home. On the other side…debt consolidation can pave the way for continued poor spending habits. If you dump your hard won equity into a financial initiative to pay off your bills quickly, you may for example end up with a longer mortgage term (reduced lifetime savings).
  2. Judith says:
    The biggest disadvantage to debt consolidation is that you will probably rack up more debts – that’s what I always did whenever I consolidated my bills. I am 64 years old and became debt free for the first time a year ago March. I pay cash for everything. Here’s how I did it:

    I stopped using charge cards. I cut them all up but one which a close friend keeps for me in case of an emergency.

    I started paying off my debts with the smallest one first. I paid the minimum on all the other debts and paid as much as I could manage on the one I was working on. Most people will advise to pay off first the bill with the highest interest rate but I needed to see progress as soon as possible in order to stick with my program.

    When one debt was paid off I added the amount of money I had been paying on that debt to the next smallest debt in addition to the amount I was already paying on that debt.

    I gave up lots of things. I cancelled magazine subscriptions. I stopped getting my hair dyed. I stopped eating out except twice a month. I stopped ordering pizza. I stopped shopping recreationally. Now I only shop for what I need. I go to the specific store, get what I need and get out of there.

    I put money aside for emergencies. For example, I needed $450 to pay my share of some dental work. I used to have to borrow money from my credit union for dental work.

    The best thing I did – I had a very trusting, close friend who managed my money for me. She still does. I pay her $25 a month. I never see a bank statement. She tells me how much money I have to spend. Whenever I need money for something unexpected – its there. I get permission from her if I want to buy something. I have a list of things I need and things I want and we’ve gone over it and decided what it is I’m getting this year.

    I would avoid debt consolidation services at all costs.

  3. says:
    Debt consolidation can be good if you can get your interest rate below your other cards, which is often feasible since the balance will be higher, then they usually give you a lower rate. It’s never a good idea if you have to pay ANY consolidation fee or have to pay a higher rate.

    I suggest staying away from any Debt Counseling service. You can consolidate, but don’t use a debt counseling service to do it. Even though there are some ( very few) which are legitimate, they can’t do anything for you that you can’t do yourself. You can negotiate your rate down and fees by talking to them and being persistent. If you offer to pay them off (because you have gotten a consolidation loan…which they don’t need to know about), they will often eliminate some fees that were charged in the past.

    There are two negative things about Debt Counseling – 1.) Never do business with one that wants money from you to consolidate and 2.) this goes on your credit file. I built statistical models for many years at Equifax and worked with Fair Isaac. A narrative code on an account which says “Debt Counseling” is just as bad as an account that is severely past due. While these companies will tell you it’s better to get counseling than get bad credit ratings on the account, that’s not true because statistically for more than 30 years, it has been shown that there is no difference. You may be trying to do your best in good faith by dealing with a Credit Counselor and you may think that’s better than defaulting or getting more late payments, but in truth the majority of people using Credit counseling are in such desperate need, they’re likely to have even more severe credit. Thus, we always have built our models using that as an indicator of a person who could possibly not pay. Also, don’t let a company tell you they don’t consider debt counseling negative. They may not, but this indicator is inherently built into models based on the way items are calculated in the model, even if the creditor does not have a negative policy about consumers with debt counseling on their credit file. You’re best bet – get an independent loan.

  4. says:
    As others have stated, you need to first examine and change how you manage your debt in particular and your personal finances in general. The biggest challenge of debt refinancing is to not go out and load up with more consumer debt because you have new room in your budget.

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