How Some Companies Can Destroy Your Debt Reduction Efforts
If you’re relying on your own intuition to find a dependable company for your debt reduction needs, you could be making a big mistake. No matter how well we are at reading people, there is no way to be 100% sure that the person or entity you’re working with is legit. So the old saying of don’t judge a book by its cover really applies here.
Especially when you’re looking for debt consolidation companies that specialize in helping people with bad credit.
Then your job becomes even harder. There’s a lot of fraudulent operators in the industry.
But there are some things you can do to dig a little deeper to find out what kind of person or company you’re really dealing with. Many of these clues are easy to spot. You don’t have to be the world’s greatest detective to notice them.
The clues that expose a company as fraudulent are usually right out in the open. All you have to do is be alert and pay attention to them.
This article will show you some of the clues you should be paying attention to when talking to your company representative.
And you’ll learn about the answers you should expect from an agent working for a reputable company.
A Reputable Debt Reduction Firm Doesn’t Try to Hide the Charges
They let you know what the total cost of your agreement will be upfront. Some firms try to hide this info. Other companies will only tell you about some of the costs.
Yet others will pull the old bait-and-switch. But a good, reputable firm will let you know all the fees associated with your agreement.
They don’t hide it and they don’t try to change the subject when you ask. They let you know at the outset exactly what it will cost you. And they also let you know the length of your agreement so you can have an idea of how long you will be involved in the program.
In other words, they are honest and upfront with you when it comes to the total cost of consolidating. The firms that don’t provide all of this info upfront are the ones you should be weary of.
Also, if a company attempts to get you to actually pay them before they do any of the work, they are scamming you.
The Honest Company Won’t Have Any Difficulty Giving You References
They should have a list of debt reduction customers they can give you along with legitimate testimonials from some of these happy clients. They should also be able to show you some awards or industry accreditations they have received for their exemplary work.
Most legitimate organizations have at least some of these things. If they can’t supply any of this to you, then they probably haven’t done a good job… or worse, they are a bad apple and you should be prepared to search for a more honest firm.
In addition, you should ask your company rep how long they have been involved with the company and the industry in general.
You’ll want to work with an employee that has a fair amount of experience. You don’t want a rookie who could make a mistake that can wind up costing you serious money.
Firms such as American Debt Enders have no problems in furnishing references to potential clients. But other firms will try to avoid it or give you the name of a friend as a reference. Be on the lookout for this.
They Will Explain Why Bill Consolidation Might Not Work
Many debt reduction firms try to convince you that there are no negatives to this option and that everyone that uses it succeeds. They make everything sound so simple and easy.
That’s a bunch of baloney.
Not everyone has success with consolidation or debt settlement. And a good company will let you know about the dangers and why some people fail with various forms of debt reduction. The good firms will also let you know what needs to be done after you consolidate.
They will breakdown all the disadvantages and what you need to do to overcome those disadvantages.
If you ask them about the downside and they say there is no downside, that’s a clear signal you are dealing with someone that is just looking to get you enrolled in the program and they don’t care whether you succeed or not.
They’ll Explain the Effects Some Debt Reduction Programs Have on Your Credit
Ask the company representative what will happen to your credit when you enroll in a program with them. If they try to say that it won’t have any effect whatsoever on your credit, then you know that they can’t be trusted. No matter what type of debt reduction program you go with, it will have some effect on your credit score.
For example, a consolidation loan will usually have a positive effect on your credit if your credit cards are maxed out. That’s because you’ll be decreasing your credit utilization. Ratings agencies view that as a positive.
But other forms of credit relief will have negative effects because they don’t decrease your credit utilization right away. It’s that simple. And if the company rep tries to tell you otherwise, you should probably start looking for another firm.
They Can Clarify What Your Alternatives Are
Some agents of these companies will try to persuade you into believing that there are no other options available to you. Those are the ones you need to forget.
Most people do have other opportunities and choices.
If a firm tries to claim you don’t have any alternatives, start looking for a firm that’s more truthful. This one is just out to make money off you.
Most agents from these firms should be able to explain what your other options are and why they think you would be better off consolidating with them. If they lie to you by telling you there are no other options, you’ll know that you’re dealing with a huckster.
Companies Operating in Good Faith Don’t Use Fear Tactics
It’s no secret that fear is one of the biggest motivators. In fact, it can get people to make some pretty bad decisions. Unfortunately, many slick and unscrupulous salesmen know this.
And they try to use it every chance they get.
One of the ways some credit consolidation representatives use fear is by convincing people that their only other option if bankruptcy.
They will tell you that either you sign up with them or you can expect to go bankrupt. Or they will put the fear of lawsuits from creditors in your mind. They will paint a bleak picture for your future and your family’s future. Don’t take the bait. Fear tactics are used to get people to make quick, unrationed decisions.
If you feel a company pressuring you and bombarding you with phone calls trying to get you to act fast, say goodbye to that firm forever. Don’t ever make quick decisions when it comes to such important money matters. If some firm is trying to get you to do just that, end your communications with them. It’s really that simple.
Other Qualities of a Good Company
Let’s say you already committed to a company. And after your commitment, you find out the person that’s handling your account within the company made some kind of mistake related to your program and situation.
If they don’t apologize and try to fix the problem right away, that’s clearly a sign you have signed up with the wrong firm.
If they do apologize and take care of the issue as soon as they are made aware of it, that’s obviously a sign of someone who truly wants to help and do the right thing. Believe it or not, some people that make mistakes will actually try to blame the other party involved.
And that’s when you know for sure they are crooks that don’t have your best interest in mind.
Always remember that unscrupulous people look for those they believe are vulnerable. Unfortunately, many people in debt are desperate for a solution and that leaves them vulnerable.
But by looking out for some of the hints laid out in this guide, you can turn the tide in your favor and protect yourself against these predatory firms. As long as you don’t rush into a decision, you should be fine.