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I want to try to settle my debts on my own, but I don't know where to start. Do I stop making payments, cancel my cards, etc.? I am not sure what to do. I am current at the moment, but by the time all the bills are paid I have very little left before the next pay check. How will this affect my credit history? Can anyone help me with this? Has anyone done this on their own with using a service?

If you are current, I am not sure that settlement would be the right thing. You might want to try a debt management approach whereby they get your interest and fees reduced and payment is made over a period of time.

Try talking to a debt counseling service first.

(The way that I understand debt settlement is that before a creditor will go the route of agreeing to a settlement, the account must be past, if you are current, it may take a few months as well as damage your credit rating. If you do dmp, you should come out smelling more like the rose.) IMHO.

Sub: #1 posted on Wed, 07/23/2008 - 03:29

desperatelyseekingsanity desperatelyseekingsanity

(Posts: 1129 | Credits: 58.41)

Desperately is right; creditors will only look at settling if you are past due, probably at least 90 days past due. That does damage your credit, and also puts you at a risk of lawsuits.

It may be that debt management would be a better choice if you do have money to pay your bills. However, I spoke with two different Consumer credit counseling Services, and the monthly payment that would be required through their program really wasn't any less than what I was already paying in minimum payments. The difference would be that they could negotiate better interest rates, and more of my monthly payment would go toward paying off the balances, therefore getting me out of debt sooner.

If you do decide that debt settlement is a better option for you, then you would need to stop paying your bills for several months.

Sub: #2 posted on Wed, 07/23/2008 - 04:21

alias1958 alias1958

(Posts: 1230 | Credits: 79.88)

If you can afford a debt management program I would do that first. If you are overextended than you might want to consider debt settlement. They are both good programs. It really just depends on your budget. :D

Sub: #3 posted on Wed, 07/23/2008 - 04:25

mobile0311 mobile0311
(Posts: 1817 | Credits: 104.57)

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