Credit Card Counselors, Sheep in Wolves Clothing?
If you are like most Americans, you probably have massive credit card debt. This is not an accident, this is not because of anything that you have done wrong. This is not because you are of a weak moral character. You are in credit card debt because you are a victim of unfair marketing practices, and I am sure the history books a thousand years from now will have a chapter about the evil and vile practices of today’s credit card companies.
If you have massive credit card debt you are a victim of unfair marketing practices that were designed to get you deeply in debt, that were designed to enslave the American people in a financial prison from which it is almost impossible to escape.
You probably think the credit card companies have all the power, have the law on their side, that there is nothing you can do but grit your teeth and pay up month after month. In the end, you will still be in debt and that too is designed to be that way.
You might think the cards are stacked against you, and indeed they are. But, there are things that you can do to legally walk away from your credit card debt….without declaring bankruptcy.
First, I want to warn you of some things NOT to do if you are in massive credit card debt. You probably have heard the commercials on TV over and over again about credit counseling companies which use consolidation loans to get you out of credit card debt. Don’t fall for these companies! They are run by the credit card companies themselves! They want you to trade in a non secured credit card debt for a secured debt, a debt that is usually secured with the equity in your home. Anyone worth their financial salt will tell you never to trade non-secured debt for secured.
No matter how much you owe the credit card companies, they cannot come and take away what you bought with that card, because unless it is stated otherwise, most items bought on a credit card are non-secured debt. It’s not like a car loan where if you do not make the payment, the repo man comes and takes your car away.
What happens when you get a consolidation loan is that you are trading non secured debt for secured debt, usually secured with your home. THEN, if you are in default, they can indeed come and take your home away from you! They come on to you, saying that you can reduce your credit card balances, and you will have just one small payment a month that covers all your credit cards. Well, you can do this on your own. Many credit card companies are willing to take a fraction of the balance and call the account paid in full. For example a friend of mine recently settled a 6000.00 balance for only 1500.00. He did not have to go through any special company to do this, he did it all by himself. And, he did not have to put his house up as collateral either.
As I said before the credit card companies are really these credit counseling /consolidation companies in disguise. They know they do not have a leg to stand on if you decide not to pay those huge credit card bills, so they came up with a plan B. Although this looks like a great deal for you, it is anything but that. Just remember, whatever kind of great “deal” they give to you, it is always going to be in their favor, not yours.
Some of these credit counseling/consolidation companies are really very dirty. They will pocket your payments to them and fail to apply that money to the accounts they are managing for you which leaves you in a very bad situation indeed. If you are in this kind of situation, you could end up losing your home within just a few months. By design, of course. Never trust them, check you accounts every month to make sure that they are properly credited, because you have so very much to lose. Better yet, never get into that situation to begin with.
There are other things you want to remember when dealing with credit card companies. Never, ever conduct business with them over the phone, do it all in writing. These companies are not honest. They are out to financially rape each and everyone of us. If you do get them to agree to something in your favor, make sure to get it in writing. Recently, a credit card company agreed my account was paid in full, that was until 2 years later when a bill collector started calling me about this account I had paid up in full. If I did not have the letter from the credit card company stating that my account was paid in full, I would have had to hire an attorney. Never underestimate how crooked they are.
I am not a lawyer, but I can tell you that there are more ways to deal with credit cards than just paying month after month. You can stop making payments and stop using the card, and after the statute of limitations runs out in your state, that debt is forgiven. It is also removed from your credit report. It is really worth looking into. Of course if you have a job, they can try to garnish your check for what you owe, however, no matter how many creditors are suing you, they can only collect 25% of your check. If you have a lot of debt and a lot of creditors, sometimes they will not bother because there simply is not enough money there to make it worth their time and effort.
Of course, it is best if you can avoid wage garnishment. If you are self employed, the credit card companies will find it just about impossible to collect. If you are disabled in any way and are on disability or sick pay, they cannot touch your money!! That does not mean they will not try, but here the law is on your side.
Actually, it becomes something like a war between you and the cc companies. We all know they are dirty. We all know you have already paid many times over for anything that you bought with the damned card. The very best thing is to stop using the card and do not fall for their schemes to enslave you in the future.
If we all stopped using and paying on our credit cards these miserable crooks might just go under. Unfortunately, our government would probably bail them out again. All I can say, if they cannot stay in business when they are charging up to 55% interest with late fees and over the limit fees, if they cannot make money when the odds are so in favor to them, then they deserve to fail!
We need to change the way the credit card companies operate.
What really makes me angry is that we bail out the banks which are the credit card companies, and they are still allowed by the government to continue with their vile and devious business practices
We need credit card reform and change. We need a simple way to figure out how much something will really cost when bought on credit, and above all, we need a fair and honest way to buy stuff on credit when we have no other options.
And, that brings me to the end, and the paradox of it all. We think we need the credit cards to buy things because we do not have the money for what we want to buy at the time. In the end, we are paying 3-4 times over something we felt we could not afford to begin with! No wonder we are having financial problems!
In other countries, people actually save their money and then buy what they need. In Europe and other areas of the world, people actually pay cash when they buy a house, pay cash, paid in full. Maybe this is not the worst idea. In the end, they pay what the price really is, not 2-3 times more. In the end, they have more money, not less. And in the end they have something that is becoming very hard to find in America, and that is financial peace of mind!
Take a look around your house, it is probably filled up with a lot of stuff that you don’t need or want. A lot of stuff that creates a limit of space and storage problems. The worse thing of all is that you are probably paying for all of that stuff on a credit card, and all that stuff is bleeding you dry.
Now is the time to take a look at our spending habits. These habits have made us slaves to the credit card companies. We need to change the way we think about stuff and junk that we think we need, but don’t.
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