If you are in any kind of financial negotiation, the same rules apply for whomever you are talking to. Be it your mortgage lender or a representative for a credit card negotiation, there are things you can do to level the playing field and take back some of your good standing as a creditor.
Don’t take on any new payments
Collection agencies will try their best to put you on a payment plan. This puts you back on their leash because it reboots the statute of limitations (seven years) that you are on the hook for your outstanding debts. What’s more, new debt in this situation may render it impossible for you to repay your old debt. Don’t swim upstream all over again. Do not, by any means, agree to a payment plan that will put you further back financially.
Make sure everything is in writing from start to finish
Your initial creditors were bad enough: slippery loan modification schemes and promises to protect your credit. You know better. Collection agencies don’t often have your best interest in mind, and, just like credit card companies, that may actually be interested in keeping you on their debt-roll for years to come. Have the terms of your agreement put in writing. You can go to court with this, which is the last thing a lender or collection agency needs.
Call off the hounds
A cease and desist letter is a cheap, easy and efficient way to stop the harassing phone calls. Plus, the longer you ignore the creditors, the older the debt. Old debt to a creditor is unattractive, and they will be less inclined to pursue you.