settling past due credit accounts
By Chuck Bentley
If you have one or more credit accounts that you are struggling to pay on time, there are a number of options to consider to help you resolve this terrible financial bondage.
1. First, do your best to pay your bills on time and pay them off entirely if you are able. If you have an unforeseen problem with your job, your health, or your income is interrupted, other approaches may become necessary.
2. Second, your creditors are likely willing to allow you to pay off your debt by negotiating a settlement amount. According to Sally Herigstad, a certified public accountant and the author of “Help! I Can’t Pay My Bills”:
“Paying the negotiated amounts is the fastest way to resolve your debts and be done with them. Because the creditors are already offering steep discounts, you don’t even have to go to the trouble of starting negotiations. Be sure to get everything in writing from your creditors before you send checks to them.”
Sally goes on to say, “Be aware that paying less than the full amount negatively affects credit scores. However, at this point, your credit score has already been damaged by past-due accounts. You’re better off resolving the debts.”
Another option is to contact a professional credit counseling agency that can negotiate reduced interest rates and settlement terms that allow you to pay off the loan with a debt management plan. But don’t just settle for a company you find in an online advertisement. That is dangerous. Crown partners with Christian Credit Counselors to be sure you will receive fair and honest help to work your way out of past due debt.
If you are unsure about negotiating with your creditors directly, CCC is a great alternative. Find them at their website.
Originally posted 5/27/2015.