Christian Credit Counseling
Christian Credit Counselors, Credit Counseling, Debit & Your Credit Score, Debt, Debt Consolidation, Uncategorized

Debt Counseling and Overcoming Your Debt

Overcoming Your Debt

Times are hard for many Americans. Unemployment rate is high and for those that have jobs raises are few and far between but the cost of living continues to increase. Many people are finding themselves in a financial bind and are either living paycheck to paycheck or are unable to meet their financial obligations each month. If you are in a hardship situation or are overwhelmed with debt, then you should consider debt counseling.

Reduction of Expenses

Upon calling the debt counseling agency, we will speak with you about your monthly financial obligations. After reviewing your expenses, we will come up with a payment plan that can fit your budget. The payment plan will still allow for any additional expenses you may accrue throughout the month.

Once we have established a monthly payment plan, we will act as your advocate to the credit card companies. In many cases, we will significantly lower your interest rates allowing for a much smaller monthly payment. Instead of paying all of your creditors, you will make one payment to us, and we will distribute the funds to them.

Light at the end of the tunnel

Once we have established a payment plan, we will set up a time frame to where all of your debt will be paid in full. This usually happens within a five year period. Knowing your debt will be paid off in five years or less will help you breathe easier and allow you to climb out from the debt.

Training courses

In order to complete the debt counseling process, you will have to undergo training courses that will help you better understand how debt works and to help ensure that you never find yourself in a financial bind again.

Do you want to know more about debt and how you can make smart financial decisions now that will help you secure a more prosperous financial future? Sign up for our newsletter for monthly money tips.

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    Christian Credit Counselors, Credit Counseling, Debit & Your Credit Score, Debt Consolidation, Home, House, Uncategorized

    Debt Counseling Before a Short Sale

    Living through The Great Recession

    Sometimes even the best efforts to be a good steward of the resources we are given can seem to come up short. In 2008 an economic downturn began that has become known as “the great recession”.

    Through no fault of their own, but only due to buying their home at the high point of home prices before the recession hit, many homeowners have found themselves “underwater”.This means the current market value of their homes is less than their original purchase price and less than the outstanding balance of their mortgage loan. If they do a conventional sale, they will be without their home and still owe the portion of their mortgage loan balance that is not covered by proceeds from the sale.

    Understanding Short Sales

    In these circumstances, with the approval of the lender, it may be possible to sell a home for less than the balance of the home loan and have the entire debt excused. This is known as a short sale. As stated by a Bank of America official quoted on the federal website, makinghomeaffordable.gov, “In many cases, [a short sale] is a dignified exit strategy where the borrower can sell the home and avoid the negative impact of foreclosure on their credit report and return to a better financial position.” While it is true that a short sale may be a viable solution for many, it is wise when considering a short sale to also seek debt counseling.

    Debt Consolidation Programs

    A debt counselor can help you explore a variety of programs available through the federal government, including the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA) program and the Housing Finance Agency Innovation Fund for the Hardest Hit Housing Markets (HHF). But most importantly, a debt counselor will assist you in determining if a short sale is really the right solution for you.

    Do you want to know more about debt and how you can make smart financial decisions now that will help you secure a more prosperous financial future? Sign up for our newsletter for monthly money tips.

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      Christian Credit Counselors, Credit Cards, Credit Counseling, Debit & Your Credit Score, Debt, Debt Consolidation, Uncategorized

      Credit Counseling – Three Reasons to Love It

      Securing Your Financial Future

      When it comes to credit counseling, you’ll see that we don’t do things halfway. Although it is necessary for a financially secure future, many perceive credit counseling to be challenging. We understand that during these circumstances you need to know that you have someone in your corner that you can trust. We have three reasons to love credit counseling and when read them, we think you’ll share our feelings too.

      Debt Advocacy

      Your credit counselor serves as an advocate on your behalf. Their primary concern is to make sure that they hold you and your family’s best interests at heart. The days of your creditors harassing you are long gone. Your credit counselor will work diligently to negotiate payment options that best fit your budget and substantially eliminate any interest owed.

      Money Education

      One of the most important factors of credit counseling is education. Many consumers find themselves in debt simply because they lack knowledge on managing their money, on how credit cards really work, and on how to spend their money wisely. During credit counseling you will learn how to manage your resources in an effective and efficient manner. Once you are debt free, it is important to make sure that you stay debt free, and financial knowledge is key. The knowledge that you will receive is valuable because you will learn to how to live a financially free existence.

      Eliminate Debt

      Credit counseling is a very effective way to eliminate debt in a relatively short time period. Many people have eliminated tens of thousands of dollars in debt within 2 to 5 years. This process allows you to finally take charge of your finances. Depending on your situation you could be living debt free sooner than you think.

      Do you want to know more about debt and how you can make smart financial decisions now that will help you secure a more prosperous financial future? Sign up for our newsletter for monthly money tips.

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        Christian Credit Counselors, Credit, Credit Cards, Credit Counseling, Debit & Your Credit Score, Debt, Debt Consolidation, Uncategorized

        Credit Counseling – More than Debt Elimination

        American Debt

        In the wake of the Great Recession, Americans now owe approximately $721 billion in unsecured credit card debt. If you feel overwhelmed with credit card debt, if you juggle your expenses just to make the minimum payments, and if it seems the quality of your life has diminished because you worry about your finances, you are definitely not alone.

        Credit Counseling

        Credit counseling began in the United States in 1951, and despite the reputable credit counseling services available today, only a small percentage of Americans in debt seek help. It might be because they are uncertain what happens in credit counseling, or perhaps the fear involved with opening up about chaotic financial situations keeps people stuck in the debt cycle. It takes great courage to talk honestly with a credit counselor about the reality of your finances. At Christian Credit Counselors, we are always honored when a new client comes to us in trust.

        Christian Credit Counselors

        Christian Credit Counselors provides a unique service. We are a non-profit financial services company and our fully certified counselors have helped over 300,000 people bring their debt under control. Yet unlike other agencies, we understand that getting your financial life in order is about more than just your bank account. Christian credit counseling is about working with someone who shares your values. It means you will have a counselor who knows financial integrity brings renewed growth to your spiritual life. Our goal is to be your compassionate ally as we help get your life back on track. We will work with you to bring your financial life more into accordance with Biblical principles. We will even pray with you in your counseling sessions, if you so choose.

        Debt Management

        With a debt management program through Christian Credit Counselors, you make one affordable monthly payment and can generally become debt free in 3 to 5 years. But the stress of financial worry may start disappearing after you make the first phone call and realize you no longer have to face your situation alone.

        Do you want to know more about debt and how you can make smart financial decisions now that will help you secure a more prosperous financial future? Sign up for our newsletter for monthly money tips.

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          Debt Consolidation and Your Credit Score

          Your Financial Choices

          Every financial choice is going to affect your credit report.  The best thing to do is to make your monthly payments on time in full.  Unfortunately, this can’t always happen.  If your debt is out of control, you have the option to choose debt consolidation.  Is this the best decision for your credit report?

          Consolidating Your Debt Loan

          The goal of debt consolidation is to make it easier to pay off debt.  In turn, this will raise your credit score and improve your credit report – assuming you make the monthly payments without defaulting.  Debt consolidation also makes room for a new line of credit – assuming the debt is paid first.  Making the switch from two or three to one large sum is another story.  Is that the right move for your credit report?  The answer is yes.  Your credit report will show that the previous active accounts are closed and cured through consolidation.  The consolidation is a new account where you can start fresh.  However, some moves will hurt your credit score.

          In what form will the consolidation be?  Choose between a debt loan, debt management plan, home equity loan and a single credit card.  Preventing a drop in your credit scores depends on the strategies used when you choose a form of consolidation.  All of them have the ability to drop your credit score, but all of them can boost your credit score too.  You need an experienced company such as Christian Credit Counseling to assist you with choosing the best route for your finances.

          Lowering Your Monthly Payments

          How will it be easier to make monthly payments?  You have the choice of lowering your interest rate or increasing the amount of time it takes to pay it.  Extending monthly payments increases interest rate payments.  Lowering interest rates makes it easier to pay a little extra over the minimum balance.  It doesn’t matter which one is chosen, as soon as this is paid off completely you can add a new credit account.

          Do you want to know more about debt and how you can make smart financial decisions now that will help you secure a more prosperous financial future? Sign up for our newsletter for monthly money tips.

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            Four Debt Consolidation Mistakes

            Debt consolidation is a great idea to help manage your debt.  It reduces the multiple bills you have to pay into one payment that’s easy to manage.  Christian credit counselors knows these mishaps very well, and we inform our clients that making these mistakes is going to hurt them rather than help.

            Debt Consolidation is not a Cure-All

            While it does relieve some stress, your spending habits aren’t going to change.  Adding additional credit cards or loans because there’s free credit available is not a good idea.  However, people who live on credit cards and loans will do this and end up in more debt than they were previously.  You will have to change your spending habits to get out of debt, and we can help you shift your mindset so that it is attainable!

            Cutting the Intermediary and Consolidating Debt

            Depending on the company, consolidated debt can be expensive.  DIY debt consolidation sounds like the better idea, but if you don’t know what you’re doing, you can mess up your finances.  Our services are inexpensive and manageable.  You don’t have to worry about spending extra just to consolidate because we are educated and experienced in finding the best route for your budget.

            Consolidating Debt isn’t Worth It

            Not all consolidated debt forces you to pay extra money over time.  You will have to be smart in finding out ways to cut interest rates and lower the life of the debt.  That’s where Christian Credit Counseling comes in.  We know the ways to save money for our clients.

            Your Consolidated Debt and Home Equity or Home Credit Line

            Using home equity for outstanding debt doesn’t erase the problem.  It will make matters worse.  If you’re behind on payments, your home is at risk of being seized by the bank.  Using home equity when you are paying mortgage is more damaging.  Since you’re not a homeowner, you use the equity gained from the mortgage to cover the debt.  If you miss a payment or more, you are at the risk of foreclosure from the mortgage lenders and the consolidated debt company.  We will make sure all the pros and cons of this risk are weighted thoroughly.

            Christian Credit counseling knows that getting out of debt doesn’t happen overnight.  We know debt consolidation makes it easier.  We also know that being debt-free is up to our customers.  We are here to assist you every step of the way.  Debt-free is a good thing to be financially.  For more debt consolidation info, contact us.

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            Christian Credit Counselors, Credit Counseling, Debit & Your Credit Score, Debt Consolidation, Uncategorized

            Forgiving Yourself for Financial Mistakes

            Put an End to Debt

            Nowadays, debt has become a part of everyone’s life.  Sometimes, debt is unavoidable.  You may have medical or school expenses that you didn’t expect.  Maybe you need someone to take care of your elderly parent.  Maybe your child needs more help at school and you have to employ a tutor.  There can be so many reasons why you got into debt that you couldn’t afford.

            Shopaholism: A Real Problem

            Of course, there are also other reasons people get in debt, which don’t have as much to do with necessity.  Maybe you made a couple of bad decisions.  Maybe you bought a car you couldn’t afford or a piece of designer clothing you fell in love with.  Now, you regret your extravagance, but it’s too late to do anything about it.

            There’s a reason why the Shopaholic books have become so popular in recent times.  Not only do you have Confessions of a Shopaholic but also Shopaholic Takes ManhattanShopaholic Ties the Knot,Shopaholic and Sister and Shopaholic and Baby, to name a few, all written by Sophie Kinsella.  We all identify with these books because we’ve all made a few bad decisions at one point or the other.

            Forgiving Yourself and Taking Charge

            Whether your debt problems arose because you’re a shopaholic or because you had unavoidable expenses, it’s time to stop beating yourself up over the past.  You might have made a few wrong decisions which resulted in debt today.  However, blaming yourself is not going to get you anywhere.

            Christian credit counseling believes in the power of forgiveness.  It’s time to forgive yourself and move on.  Once you begin to let go of the burden of guilt and shame, you can start taking charge of your life and eventually become the person you’ve always wanted to be.

            Accepting Financial Help

            Debt and credit counseling can be one of the first steps to lead you in the right direction.  You might feel like you have a lot of work to do, from finding work that you love to giving your family everything that they need.  And you may not feel as though you can handle everything on your own.

            Do you want to know more about debt and how you can make smart financial decisions now that will help you secure a more prosperous financial future? Sign up for our newsletter for monthly money tips.

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              Christian Credit Counselors, Credit Counseling, Debit & Your Credit Score, Debt, Debt Consolidation, Debt Settlement, Uncategorized

              Debt Settlement Scams – Asking the Right Questions

              Avoiding Debt Settlement Scams

              Unfortunately, there are plenty of companies out there that prey on those trying to get their debt under control. In most cases, these companies refer to themselves as debt management organizations. They often promise to act as the go between with you and your creditors; promising a low monthly payment plan to help you pay off debt.

              Though the idea sounds legitimate, what most people don’t know is that these companies tack on serious interest to your payment plan for profit. This can either inflate your monthly payment are extend you payback time considerably. Before committing to an agreement with one of these companies, be sure to seek credit counseling first to learn more about real, legitimate debt consolidation.

              How to Determine if a DMP Company is Legitimate

              • Ask the representative if their company is an accredited non-profit credit counseling agency. The accreditation will usually be listed with the COA (Counsel on Accreditation) or the ISO (Organization for Standardization). Also do research on the company to find out if any consumer complaints or lawsuits have been filed against the organization.
              • Be sure to ask if counselors are certified for debt management. These certifications should encompass credit counseling, budgeting, and/or credit consumer laws.
              • Be prepared to ask representatives what information they will provide you with other than a debt management plan enrollment. For instance, will the agency teach you money management or budgeting skills? And if they do provide education materials, are they free?
              • If a DMP or Debt Management Plan is all the company offers, be sure to ask if part of the DMP is reserved for the credit counseling payment. In some cases, these companies will tack on additional fees to your DMP plan without your knowledge.

              Do you want to know more about debt and how you can make smart financial decisions now that will help you secure a more prosperous financial future? Sign up for our newsletter for monthly money tips.

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                Christian Credit Counselors, Credit Counseling, Debit & Your Credit Score, Debt, Debt Consolidation, Uncategorized

                Debt Consolidation: Taking Back Financial Freedom

                Dealing with Debt

                If you are in debt, you are not alone. There are many people who understand your story. Many of us have been there ourselves. Several people have gotten out of debt, and so can you. If you are searching for a way to deal with all of your overwhelming debt, an organization like Christian Credit Counselors may be able to give you some kind of relief.

                Debt Consolidation

                Debt consolidation can help you get out of debt, and it can be done as an affordable option. The debt consolidation program will do whatever in its will and power to make improvements in the payments and interest rates of your debts. Negotiations can be made with the creditors to come up with reasonable terms for your debt. When you have better rates and payments, you can make better progress when paying down the debt.

                Christian Credit Counselors can consolidate your debt into a low monthly payment. In many cases there will be a reduction in your interest rates. When the interest rates are reduced, you can usually pay off the debt in about five years or less.  Debt consolidation is effective because it gets down to the heart and soul of the issues, which is the interest rates. When the debts are combined into one payment, the interest rates will be more reasonable. You will not have to spend all of your income on your debt payments or declaring for bankruptcy to get the debt off your back.

                Debt Counseling

                Before debt consolidation begins, there will be a counseling appointment where all of the financial issues will be assessed. You will have a counselor who is knowledgeable and understanding, and the counselor can make the session motivating and informing. If you want to know if debt consolidation can work in your favor, you should seek out help from the an organization like CCC

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                  Christian Credit Counselors, Credit Counseling, Debit & Your Credit Score, Debt, Debt Consolidation, Debt Settlement, Uncategorized

                  Credit Counseling vs. Debt Settlement

                  Resolving Your Debt

                  If you have decided to resolve your debt, you may be looking at different options available to help you through the process.  Although debt settlement may seem promising beware.  The reasons below explain why you should consider credit counseling instead of debt settlement.

                  Debt Settlement Is Often A Scam

                  You have probably seen the ads on the internet indicating you can become debt free with debt settlement.  The reality is there are many companies out there that are looking to make money and don’t have your best interest in mind.  Debt settlement companies have been accused of failing to work on the behalf of consumers and not contacting creditors as they had promised. They collect the fees but don’t actually do anything for the consumer.  Debt settlement companies are for profit and consumers will owe taxes on the any forgiven debt.

                  Debt Settlement Is Too Good to Be True

                  Debt settlement companies often promise that the consumer will be debt free in an unbelievably short time period.  They indicate that they can negotiate to settle the debt at a fraction of the amount the consumer actually owes.  The fact is that this is too good to be true.  The consumer ends up paying a significant set up fee and monthly service charges to the debt settlement company so in the end they are out more money and their debt has not been improved.  Some consumers end up in worse debt than when they started.

                  Credit Counseling is a Realistic Way to Resolve Your Debt

                  Don’t despair.  Although debt settlement is not the way to resolve your debt you do have another option that will help.  Credit Counseling will provide you a solution to your financial issues.  You can enroll in the Debt Management Program (DMP) in which all of your unsecured debt will be consolidated and you will pay one monthly payment.  Christian Credit Counselors will work with creditors to reduce your interest rates which helps you pay off the debt within about 3-5 years.  Your monthly payment will go to Christian Credit Counselors who will send the funds directly to your creditors.  In the end you will have paid off all of your outstanding debt and your credit score will not be negatively impacted.

                  Tell Me About Christian Credit Counselors

                  Christian Credit Counselors is licensed in 31 states, been in business over 24 years, and has helped over 300,000 individuals. Christian Credit Counselors has certified counselors to help answer questions and provide solutions.  Several accreditations and certifications include the Better Business Bureau A+ rating and the Council on Accreditation.  Christian Credit Counselors is a non-profit organization that provides educational tools and credit counseling to help consumers regain financial control.

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