With Consumer Credit Counseling your going to go through a counselor who will tell you what you already know. After you have paid your enrollment fee, and agreed to automatic bank drafts they will start your program. Your counselor will then contact your creditors and "attempt" to lower your interest.
Keep in mind it is only lowered while in the CCCS program. Should you or the counselor be late in getting the payment to the creditor ,that interest you had lowered will raise its ugly head again making things even worse than ever. Keeping the above in mind, they want you to think they are non-profit and manage your money well.
A news article in California found Clients of the California-based National Consumer Council, Florida-based Debt Management Foundation Services Inc. and Massachusetts-based Better Budget Financial Services Inc. paid thousands of dollars to keep bill collectors at bay, but instead clients saw their debts, interest rates and late fees increase as the three companies did little to help.
As wolves in sheep's clothing, CCCS, follows up with your creditor with a letter of council that tells them of your involvement in their program and asks them the work with them. Then, ask for what is well known as their contribution. They claim to be non profit, yet the money you could be paying toward your debt goes to them.
Debt Consolidation is always a great way to bring resolve to your debt as long as you have a process in place before the consolidation to settle the debt. If there is no procedure in place to discount the amount owed, there is no "smart" reason to conduct a consolidation loan. Lowering the monthly payment is nice, but the end result may not be what you desired.
A simple trade out of loans does not lower the amount owed or monthly payment, and in most cases your going to end up owing double what you started with. You will as 80% of consumers do, bring accounts to a zero balance and owe another lender at a lower or longer rate/term. In most cases people that go through debt consolidation will re-use the accounts that were paid off, resulting in double the debt.
The end result is if you have a well qualified debt settlement company that will take charge and get you the desired results, and guarantee this is in writing your sure to get back on track.
With Fee based Debt Settlement you have many options, and in several ways can save you money. You should know that no debt settlement company can perform any real service to you till such time as you have money to settle. If it is a buffer or shield your looking for, your always in better hands with creditor experts that are IAPDA certified and have been in the collection and or credit industry. They will understand the creditor and your account better than your average debt settlement company.
Further, the fees charged by fee based debt settlement company is going to cost you about 15% of your total debt load. So what ever you see in advertisement's, you can add about 15 % to their quote, and in most cases is paid up front before the job is done or even started. Read the fine print and guarantee. If they are not wiling to give you a written guarantee to perform and produce you should reconsider doing business with them, regardless of their affiliations or ratings.
You have heard the old saying, if it is not in writing it didn't happen? Truth is, there is only one type of guarantee that will protect the consumer, that is the guarantee in writing. I found one of the largest debt settlement companies has just had a class action law suit filed against them for taking payment before the service was provided, additionally has over 700 BBB complaints filed. Attorney Generals nation wide want to protect consumers from wrong doing, and the only way to do that long term is for the debt settlement company to conduct their actions in the best interest of the consumer.
So, a written, signed and dated pre-agreed agreed settlement term on each account seems to be the best option of protection. This seems to be the direction of debt settlement and clearly has the consumers best interest in mind. Given most all conditions the worst that can happen is you end up paying what you owed in the first place.
The problem with fee based debt settlement is that you may still have to pay all of what you owed and have already paid into the debt settlement program, yet the service was not performed. Good luck getting a refund.
Finally, should you feel the need, make sure you have done your home work, and have counted every dime you are going to be charged and how aggressive the settlement team is.