With so many financial decisions hanging over our heads each day, the idea of debt counseling becomes enticing. After all, having help with debt relief efforts can be the difference in a successful outcome or a return to the bottom of the debt barrel. However, not all debt counseling services are created equal and some may prove more beneficial for your situation than others.
One of the most underutilized services in American today is credit counseling agencies. Often thought to be tied exclusively to the bankruptcy process, these companies actually offer a range of services that can fit the financial needs of just about anyone. Offering education on topics from simple money management strategies and structured debt relief plans, to investing and retirement planning, a credit counselor is a great first step in the debt relief process.
Debt Management Agencies
As a more common source for advice, many people skip over credit counseling and go right into the office of a debt relief company; much to their peril. Although a debt management company can offer some valuable services, there tends to be a higher risk when dealing with these entities. The level of debt relief fraud and scams are much more prominent among these companies, making it difficult for consumers to find high quality help. Further, even legitimate companies may be more inclined to “sell” a person on one particular avenue for debt relief that may not always be the best solution. These companies are not inherently bad, rather they should be consulted with an air of caution.
Although not always the preferred option, filing for bankruptcy is a highly effective tool for debt relief. Depending on the financial situation of the debtor, it can even be the option that makes matters, such as keeping a home out of foreclosure, possible. A Fort Worth bankruptcy attorney is a debt counselor in many ways. Their job is to review the financial situation of the debtor, help weigh all the risks and benefits of the process, assist in matters of the court, and even field creditor interactions. Even if a person is unsure of bankruptcy as an option, a quick discussion with a qualified attorney can provide a lot of insight into making their debt relief goals possible.