Credit Counseling: Find a Positive Way to Handle Student Loan Debt

Student loan debt can be an intimidating and sometimes sudden thing to face, but with the right tactics and actions you can find a way out from under your imposing student loan debt and work toward a brighter financial future. School loans often come to the surface right after graduate and put a damper on your feeling of elation and accomplishment, now you are not only faced with starting a new life on your own and finding a job, but also paying back all the money you borrowed over the time of your academic career. If you had to drop out of school, you are also hit with the same realization, though there are deferment options for extreme situations, like medical illness and others.

If you are considering the options of debt management that work the best for school loans and debts, credit counseling can help you find the answers you need. Credit counseling companies are abundant and often offer services for free or little cost, depending on your financial obligations and reality. Many credit counseling organizations are non-profit offering services and help for free. Credit counselors are often trained well in the different areas of debt consolidation, debt negotiation, credit repair and planning for a successful financial future. They should also have a vast knowledgeable about the world of school loans and the different tactics that can be used to help pay them down or offer settlement options to your creditors.

Before you start looking for a credit counseling firm it’s important to get a straight shot look at your student loan debt. This means making a list of all your loans with the following information: creditor, creditor contact information, current balance, interest rate, current or proposed monthly payments and any other pertinent information you may need to assess your debt. Then total it all up. This may be difficult and bring you into a shattering reality, but you need to know the depth of your debt to ensure you find the right credit counselor for your situation.

When considering a credit counseling company or organization it’s important to do a little homework and make sure you are working with a credible firm before sharing any financial information or signing a contract with them. You can do this by starting with the company’s web site you are most interested in. Look for displayed certifications, contact information, staff qualifications and information, services offered, potential fees and real customer testimonials. They should also have a physical address listed and have a professional looking site that is easy to navigate and not trying to sell you products or unrelated services.

For the first meeting, make sure you take your list and full information on the school loans you are wanting to work with and an open mind. A credit counselor should look over everything with you and share with you what they think would be the best course of action, however they must also share with you all other options you have and how to go about those options if you are interested in any of them. Some of the most popular options are debt negotiation where you can negotiate a settlement offer and pay off a loan at a lower price than the current balance. You can also negotiate down the interest rate or monthly payment if need be. Credit counselors have experience with this and may offer this as a service for you, to help relieve the stress you are facing with your student loans.

Debt consolidation should also be an option they offer and share with you. This involves offering you a loan that will cover all your other loans, paying them off and leaving you with only one loan with one monthly payment and one interest rate. This can offer immediate relief to your credit report and score as well as stop any harassing phone calls or letters you may be dealing with.

Regardless, of the credit counseling services you decide to go with or the company you work with, you should keep an open mind and discerning eye. This will help you find credible, solid help in dealing with your student loan debt and help you on your way to a more secure financial future.

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