The Best Debt Settlement Programs: What To Look Out For

Monday, June 3, 2013
When debt becomes too much to handle, and the chances of clearing them through independent means are practically nil, negotiating a debt settlement deal with creditors may be the best course of action. But securing the best debt settlement program possible can be tricky for those unfamiliar with the process.

This option can eliminate debts completely, with only a fraction of the debt requiring repayments. It makes the task of securing a debt-free status all the easier, but there are negatives to the deal that have to be considered too. And unless low cost debt relief services can be found, what is gained in the deal can be lost in fees.

Of course, the ultimate aim is to regain a strong financial status, which can be hampered greatly if bankruptcy is granted. But the terms of a debt settlement plan can make all the difference in the long run too.

How a Settlement Agreement Works

The best debt settlement programs are available from professional settlement companies who are experienced in negotiating deals with creditors. The reason is simply that they have the experience and the legal knowledge to best represent the client. And this is crucial from the start.

Normally, settlement is an option open to debtors who have fallen substantially behind in their loan repayments, even as much as 6 months. Through a settlement program, the actual debt is reduce to a fraction of that owed. So the debtors only has to pay 50% or even 25% of the debt.

To make the deal worthwhile, a low cost debt relief service provider needs to be found. The fees need to be low to ensure the maximum savings are made. However, the principal result of securing debt settlement is that the debt is slashed to a fraction, and the bankruptcy court is avoided.

Where To Go

The National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) is the best place to start when looking for the best debt settlement programs available. The NFCC is the country's oldest non-profit organization offering financial advice to consumers on matters relating to debt management.

The body does not offer settlement programs themselves, but they have expert counselors that can identify what terms are attainable, and recommend debt settlement companies to clients. So, finding a low cost debt relief service from a reputable company is made easier.

The good news is that consultation is free of charge, and can usually be accessing online through chat facilities on the NFCC website, or over the phone. So, for those seeking a debt settlement with their creditors, it should be their first port of call.

Debt Settlement Options

Finding the best debt settlement program involves some careful research, usually online, into the range of settlement companies that exist out there. But the first port of call should be the NFCC, which can endorse an applicant to a settlement company with a good reputation, thus removing the need to search.

It is always possible to negotiate with creditors independently, but it may be harder to secure the deal that is wanted. There are low cost debt relief programs available, so aim for these.

As an alternative to settling the debt, it may be worth considering a Debt Management Plan. This is where debt is repaid in full, ensuring it actually improves the credit score, unlike the settlement process.

Most of us strive to avoid bankruptcy, but if a debt settlement plan cannot be agreed, be sure to have a good lawyer on hand.