It’s easy to let your debts get out of control. According to Experian, the average American has over $92,000 in debt. It is possible to review and reduce your debts using some of the suggestions below.
If you have questions about what steps you should take to manage your debt, contact a debt dispute lawyer at Luftman, Heck & Associates. Call today at 614-224-1500 or use our online contact form to reach out and schedule a free consultation.
How To Check Your Credit Reports
Reviewing your credit reports is a great way to determine how much money you owe and to whom. Creditors may report to one or more of the three major credit bureaus: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.
You can pull a free copy of your credit report from each of the three bureaus from AnnualCreditReport.com. Due to the pandemic, they are now offering free reports weekly as opposed to annually. It is undetermined how long this offering will last.
However, it is still in place for the time being. You will need to enter your legal name, birth date, social security number, and address to begin the form. Then, you can select which credit report you want or choose all three.
Check Your Credit Reports Every Year
You should pull all your credit reports and verify all information on them at least once per year. Verify the spelling of your name, addresses, employers, and other personal information. You should also make sure all the debts reported on your accounts are accurate.
It is up to you to identify and correct inaccurate or outdated information on your credit report.
How to Reduce Debts
Once you learn exactly which debts are reporting on your credit accounts, you can begin dealing with them. There are many methods of paying down debt methodically. There are also options for eliminating it entirely or reducing it in other ways.
Under very unique circumstances, a debt consolidation loan may be a good way to reduce your debt. It’s best to get one of these loans from your bank or credit union. Avoid high-interest consolidation loans that won’t save you any money in the long run.
Many creditors will accept a lower percentage of your actual debt when you offer a lump sum debt settlement. Creditors sometimes allow a reduced payoff rather than spend time and money on long-term repayments.
However, it can be best to ask an attorney to negotiate with the creditor on your behalf. Often, the companies will take you more seriously and give you a better offer – saving you money overall.
Pitfalls to Watch Out For When Managing Debt
You should always keep in mind that you are in control of your debt. Don’t let the creditors or debt collectors make illegal threats. They must treat you with respect and follow federal regulations when collecting on debts.
Watch out for these pitfalls:
- Obtaining a high-interest debt consolidation loan
- Paying debts with high-interest payday loans
- Utilizing debt relief companies that make impossible promises
- Seeking help from a company that only has one option for debt relief, such as bankruptcy
Get a Free Consultation with a Debt Dispute Lawyer
A debt dispute lawyer at Luftman, Heck & Associates helps you get a handle on runaway debt. We have a team that evaluates your specific situation and enables you to decide which debt management option is best for you.