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Get Help with Student Loan Debt

If you’re suffering under the weight of student loan debt, it may be difficult to know who to turn to. Student loans are one of the most important debts you can have because they represent the opportunity to improve your education and get a good job in the future. However, if you’re just out of school and trying to find a job in a difficult economy, or if you’ve taken a placeholder job while you search for a career that will use your degree, you may find that your student loan debt is more serious than you thought it would be.

Student loans recently surpassed credit cards as the most common form of debt in the United States, making it that much more important for people with too much student loan debt to contact a professional and get help with their debt management.

Who to Contact

You can contact a qualified credit counselor like Creditguard if you need help managing your student loan debt. A credit counselor can give you practical, actionable suggestions for making your monthly loan payments more affordable. These suggestions may include going into deferment, filing for hardship status or seeking to get a better interest rate on your loans.

A credit counselor can also help you with your personal finances in general. It could be that your student loans only feel overwhelming because there are steps you can take to improve your finances in other areas of your life. A counselor can give you helpful tips for staying frugal while shopping, finding affordable childcare services or getting assistance with medical bills or utility payments.

Counselors can also give you advice on how to manage your other types of credit such as credit cards, personal loans and store lines of credit. These other types of credit may be managed through a process known as debt consolidation, which your counselor will explain in detail. The counselor may work with you and decide that consolidation is the way to help you pay off these loans more quickly, which can save money each month to go toward paying off your student loans.

The only way you know if you’ll be able to get help with student loan debt (and other forms of debt that you may have) is if you contact a credit counselor today.

Surviving Financial Hardships through Good Debt Management

get out of debt and be debt free

Anyone can experience financial setbacks, but you don’t have to let them control your life. Sound debt management and learning how to get out of debt can help you survive most financial difficulties by stretching how far your paycheck goes. You should put aside money for an emergency fund so that you can get through tough financial situations or unexpected expenses. Paying off student loan debts and credit card debt eliminates monthly interest payments, which makes it easier to pay your living expenses and save money.

Establishing Financial Priorities

You have essential monthly expenses, so you must first ensure that you can afford your unsecured debt payments, rent, utilities, food, insurance, transportation and food for yourself and your family. Try to put aside 20 percent of your income for an emergency fund and other savings such as retirement, a college fund or other financial goals in order to help you get out of debt.

  • Try to pay off your credit card debt to eliminate monthly interest charges.
  • If you suspect fraudulent activity, report it and request that creditors follow reasonable plans to verify your identity before granting credit.
  • If your expenses increase, find ways to reduce your spending.
  • If unsecured debts become too expensive to pay while meeting your other living expenses, then consider debt consolidation services.

Benefits of Debt Consolidation for Relieving Financial Hardships

Many good people get into financial trouble due to family additions, emergency repair bills, medical or legal expenses and cutbacks in their working hours. If your unsecured debt becomes too high and you are struggling to get out of debt you need to contact a nonprofit company like CreditGuard of America.

  1. Debt consolidation counselors help to create a custom debt management plan based on your income and expenses.
  2. Counselors convince your creditors to lower interest rates and drop penalties and fees.
  3. You get a predictable and affordable monthly payment that satisfies all your creditors and makes your balances drop faster.
  4. You can pay off your debts in months and learn about better debt management so that you can avoid getting into debt in the future.

Some loans are secured with collateral, but unsecured debts carry high interest rates because lenders loan money without guaranteed security. Getting out of unsecured debts is the fastest way to strengthen your financial position, build your credit rating and manage your money more effectively. If the opportunity arises, and you are in a point in your life where you feel the pressure and struggle to get out of debt, asking for help is your best option to secure your future and be financially comfortable.

Consumer Credit and Debt in 2012

Many consumers are dealing with more debt than they know how to handle, and both government agencies and nonprofit debt consolidation organizations are doing everything in their power to help individuals regain control over their financial situations.

Consumer Credit Overview

The total consumer debt in the U.S. at the end of 2012 was $11.35 trillion. Of this total, $8.6 trillion is housing debt, and the other $2.75 trillion is non-housing debt. Non-housing debt includes most forms of unsecured debt, such as credit card balances and student loans. Considering only the non-housing statistics, the average amount of debt per person in the U.S. is still more than $8,760.

Approximately 31 percent of consumer debt is from revolving accounts, which are mostly credit cards. The remaining 69 percent is from loans, such as student loans, vehicle loans and personal loans. Auto loans make up the bulk of these, and in 2012, the average car loan was $26,700.

Credit Card Debt

In 2012, 181 million people in the U.S. held at least one credit card, and the total number of cards was estimated at 609 million. While about one-third of U.S. residents did not have any credit cards, about 10 percent of the population had more than 10 cards.

More than $2.1 trillion dollars was charged to credit cards in 2012, but only about 54 percent of cardholders pay their entire balances each month. Approximately 33 percent of cardholders carry a monthly balance that is less than $10,000, and the other 13 percent carry a balance of $10,000 or more.

Although the number of credit cards has declined in recent years, purchases are expected to grow through 2017.   This projection is just another reason why Credit Guard credit card debt programs are growing in importance.  The category of purchases for which credit cards are most frequently used is travel expenses at 81 percent. This is closely followed by expensive purchases at 77 percent, personal items at 46 percent and dining out at 44 percent.

Household Debt and Financial Obligations Ratios

An important aspect of the Federal Reserve report is the household debt ratio (DSR). This statistic measures the average amount of debt payments to the average amount of disposable income. In December 2012, the average consumer spent 10.6 percent of his or her income on debt payments.

Another measure of consumer debt used by the Federal Reserve is the financial obligations ratio (FOR). This ratio includes additional expenses, such as property taxes and insurance payments. At the end of 2012, the FOR was much higher than the DSR. The FOR was 13.9 percent for homeowners and 24.1 percent for renters.

Debt Consolidation Help

While these statistics concerning consumer debt in 2012 do not bode well, help is available for anyone who would like to improve his or her financial situation. Reliable and trustworthy debt consolidation organizations like Credit Guard offer credit and debt counseling and programs that can help consumers pay their existing debts. Through these programs, consumers may benefit from lower interest rates and simple payment plans.

Financial Counseling Benefits of Debt Consolidation

Professional nonprofit credit counseling companies can help you manage your finances by teaching you how to create a budget, deal with credit card debt and make better spending choices. You can eliminate collection calls, restore your credit rating and start making only one monthly payment to satisfy your creditors when you choose debt consolidation.

Why Other Debt Relief Programs Come Up Short

Consumers can choose from various debt consolidation programs, but some highly publicized solutions actually prove to be poor ways to manage debt. Consolidation loans often prove expensive over the long-term because you must pay closing costs and points. This strategy doesn’t get rid of your debt; it only transfers your obligations and spreads them out over a longer period. Other disadvantages of settlement programs and consolidation loans include the following drawbacks:

  • Debt settlement programs ruin your credit, and the IRS charges interest on any debts that companies are willing to forgive.
  • Loans transfer your debt, which allows you to use your credit to get further into debt.
  • Trying to get out of debt without changing your spending habits is similar to building a house out of cards.

Legitimate Debt Consolidation Programs

Reliable debt consolidation companies like Credit Guard analyze your financial health and come up with a custom debt management plan to recommend to your creditors. Professional credit counselors convince your lenders to lower interest rates, drop fees and penalties and allow you to make one monthly payment, which is divided among all your unsecured credit accounts.

  1. Debt consolidation stops collection calls and restores your dignity because you continue to pay your loan obligations.
  2. High interest rates make monthly payments difficult to pay, but lowering your interest rates reduces your payments and loan balances.
  3. Counselors help you understand complex credit agreements and learn how to reduce your monthly spending.
  4. You get free initial consultations to discuss your financial situation, and debt consolidation services only charge minimal administration fees.

Benefits of Debt Consolidation

Debt consolidation services are confidential, and you can contact agencies to arrange debt consolidation online from the privacy of your home. Anyone can get into trouble financially due to work layoffs, medical bills, personal liabilities or business problems. Seeking to repay your loans by using experienced negotiators preserves your credit rating, and if you stick to your agreement, your credit rating will rise. Benefits of higher credit scores include the following financial advantages:

  • Better credit means that you can qualify for home or business loans and lower interest rates.
  • Employers and landlords often check credit scores.
  • Insurance companies offer lower rates to people with better credit.

You can easily get into debt because spending money you haven’t earned seems painless. However, available credit can convince you to buy things you don’t really need. Debt consolidation programs help you pay off your debts and learn how to manage your money to live comfortably, save for the future and meet your long-term financial goals.

Taking Control of Your Finances



For many people, their money and personal finances are seemingly out of their control. I mean, how can you combat such a weak economy? Wrong! You have the power to change your financial situation by taking these simple tips to heart:

1) Read a book.

  • Remember these? They are what people used to look at before televisions. There are thousands of awesome educational self help books on managing personal finances and understanding economics; go to a bookstore or get ’em off Amazon.

2) Write down your personal goals.

  • Sit down and picture where you see yourself financially in five years, ten years, fifty years. Then, write it down and keep the paper in a secure place. Be as specific as possible and use these guidelines as the ideals to strive towards.

3) Come up with a crazy specific budget.

  • Take a couple hours to whip up a very detailed budget that accounts for everything from groceries to vacations to emergency funds. Then, force yourself to live by it. Repeat this step at least once a year or whenever you experience a dramatic shift in income or are confronted with a drastic lifestyle change.

4) Speaking of that emergency fund…

  • Life happens: people die, people get pregnant, people get fired… It is absolutely vital to be prepared for whatever may come your way. Prepare for the maximum not the minimum so when these events pop up, you and your finances are ready.

5) Start planning for retirement.

  • I don’t care if retirement is 60 years away: START PLANNING NOW. Establish a retirement plan as soon as you can and you will thank me for it later. Just remember: compound interest is a beautiful thing.

These are just the tip of the iceberg, but they are a great start to changing your life and your finances. You control your financial future; own it.