Debt Elimination

Credit counseling can do you a world of good

It seems sometimes that all the news coming out about credit counseling and credit repair services is bad news. The news media often focuses on the handful of unscrupulous operators, and this can create the false impression that the entire industry is out to rip people off. Fortunately for consumers and honest credit counseling centers, nothing could be further from the truth. There are in fact a great many credit counseling agencies who do a stellar job at helping consumers manage their debt, and just as importantly, avoid going back into debt in the future.

The presence of unscrupulous operators has the effect, however, of sullying the entire industry, and it can be difficult for consumers to know where to turn. Legitimate credit counselors are just as concerned about shady business people as are consumers, and the various industry trade groups work hard to rid the industry of scam artists.

One of the best ways for consumers to gather information on good credit counseling agencies is through the recommendations of family members, coworkers and friends. In today?s world it is not at all unusual for people to need credit counseling services; you may already know someone who has been through the process and can provide much needed guidance. A few discreet questions can often lead you to those who can help.

If this tactic fails, there are probably many credit counseling services to be found in your local or online telephone directory. Sorting through theses may take some time and some work, though. It is important to separate the legitimate credit counselors from any unscrupulous ones. One good way to do that is to check their reputation with the Better Business Bureau, local Chamber of Commerce or similar organizations.

Once you have found some good candidates, it is important to interview the credit counseling specialist and get a feel for what they are offering and what they can do. A legitimate credit counseling agency will be willing to provide you with references of past clients, and it is important to follow up with those clients to ensure their satisfaction.

A good quality credit counseling service will also stress the importance of remaining debt free. To this end, they may offer consumer education classes, budgeting advice and similar programs. These programs can be as valuable as the credit counseling itself, and the presence of these programs is a big plus.

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