Here's how one family paid off $109,000 in credit card debt

For Brian Brandow, carrying credit card debt was normal. He thought it was simply what people did. After all, everyone he knew had some credit card debt, so how could it be so bad? But this mentality led to chronic overspending — for years.  Here’s the story of the Brandows…

How do traditional debt settlement companies make money?

A debt settlement company does exactly what its name implies: It helps you negotiate with your creditors to settle your debt for less than what you owe. Sounds amazing, right? Well, not so fast. You need to understand how traditional debt settlement companies work and, more importantly, how they make…

What to do if you have medical debt you can’t pay

If you have medical debt you just can’t deal with, you’re definitely not alone. About 43 million Americans have unpaid medical debt. And for many people, mounting medical bills mean mounting stress. Medical debt is unique in many ways, including that it’s rarely voluntary and often unexpected. Along with a…

5 steps to rebuild credit after debt management

One reason some people choose a debt management plan (DMP) over bankruptcy is they want to protect their credit score. The upshot is, a DMP won’t hurt your credit nearly as much as a bankruptcy or debt settlement would as long as you pay your bills on time. Still, you’ll…

5 steps to rebuild credit after debt settlement

A settled debt is better than an unpaid, past-due one on your credit report, but settling a debt can often hurt your credit score. That’s because settling a debt means you didn’t pay it as agreed. Here’s how to rebuild credit after debt settlement. How badly your credit has been…

What is bankruptcy counseling and do I need it?

Even if you have a pretty good handle on what bankruptcy is all about, and you’re confident it’s the best path for you to take, you’ll still need to take two bankruptcy counseling courses. Every state requires you to take these courses to successfully go through personal bankruptcy. In fact,…

Here’s how to keep medical bills from sending you into bankruptcy

Dealing with major health problems is stressful enough, but mounting medical bills can make that stress even worse. Here’s how to keep those medical bills from sending you into bankruptcy. It’s hard to pin down exactly how many people file bankruptcy because of medical debt, in part because it’s usually…

Can your debt cause you to lose your tax refund?

If you’re expecting a tax refund, you probably already know how you’re going to spend it. But there’s a chance your refund won’t hit your mailbox or your bank account at all if you’re behind on certain debts. Here’s how your debt can cause you to lose your tax refund.…

How long does debt settlement stay on your credit report?

If you’re thinking about settling your debt — essentially negotiating with your creditors to pay off your debt for less than what you owe — be aware that making a settlement  doesn’t mean your debt disappears from your credit report. In most cases, a settled account remains on your credit…

How to negotiate credit card debt settlement by yourself

If you find yourself crippled by credit card debt, having racked up charges that will be hard to pay off, you might be able to settle your accounts with your lenders for less than what you owe. And you might not need a debt settlement company to do it. Here’s…

How does debt settlement affect your credit score?

If you’re considering settling your debt or already in the process, you no doubt want to know how debt settlement will affect your credit score. The answer depends on a number of factors. Debt settlement will hurt your score, but that might be acceptable to you, especially if you have…

How long does it take to rebuild credit after debt settlement?

If you’re thinking about settling your debt, or in the process of doing so, you’re probably looking forward to having that financial weight taken off your shoulders. You might also hope that your credit score will rebound quickly once you settle your debts. Debt settlement, though, won’t improve your credit…

How to settle debt & remove it from your credit report

Settling debt is essentially coming to an agreement with your creditors to pay back part of what you owe and be forgiven for the rest. If you’re at the stage of considering settling debt, then you’ve already missed several payments, probably months worth, which takes a toll on your credit.…

How to settle IRS debt by yourself

Taxes aren’t exactly a fun part of life, and they certainly aren’t optional. If left unpaid, your tax bill can balloon and cause a huge financial headache, one you might not be able to easily dig your way out from. Here’s how to settle IRS debt by yourself. If you…
Kate Rockwood

Kate Rockwood

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