Debt consolidation is a great way to stay on top of payments and make a plan for the future of your finances, but it’s not a guaranteed way to get out of debt. Before you consider debt consolidation, make sure that your spending habits are under control, that you make your current payments on time, and that your credit score is in good shape. This makes it easier to get a card that allows balance transfers or a loan from your bank. Also, debt consolidation may not be worth it if you can pay off your balances within the next few months at your current payment rate. On the other end of the spectrum, if your debt burden exceeds half of your income or if the amount you owe is overwhelming, it might be a better idea to explore debt relief options.
As a result, some have had to make difficult choices between paying off their student debt and paying rent, health care, child care and other basic needs. If President Biden cancels at least $10,000 debt consolidation in student debt, millions of borrowers would get significant relief. Of the borrowers with outstanding federal student loans, an estimated 15 million have less than $10,000 in student debt.
However, due to administrative errors and challenges, very few borrowers have actually received the expected debt relief over the years. An alternative to a debt settlement company is a non-profit consumer credit advisory service. These nonprofits may try to work with you and your creditors to develop a debt management plan that you can pay off that can help you get out of debt.
For those with good credit, pulling out one of these cards to pay off high-interest debts can help you pay off your balances. Beware of high balance transfer fees and promotional time that expires before the balance is paid off. It’s a way to consolidate all your debts into one loan with one monthly payment.
Debt settlement programs are typically offered by for-profit companies to those with significant credit card debt. The counselor uses your deposits to pay off your unsecured debts, such as your credit card bills, student loans, and medical bills, according to the payment plan. Their advisors are certified and trained in credit, money and debt management and budgeting.