Smart Debt Relief and Payoff Options

If you’re not in default on your student loans, credit cards, personal or car loans, or other debts, then there’s no reason to be shy about asking your creditor for help. While some creditors do turn down reasonable debt relief requests, most are happy to work with their customers.

Here are some common smart strategies you can try:

Trial Periods (if it worked once, go back)

If you’ve already had success negotiating terms with a lender or renegotiating interest rates with a credit card company or student loan servicer, count yourself lucky since sometimes they won’t change the deal even if it worked before. Just call up and ask if they’ll extend that same offer for another period of time.


If your credit is in good shape and you’re a good customer, a creditor will be more likely to give you a break if they know that it’s going to help them keep you as a customer. Just let them know that all the other companies have been moving your interest rate up, so if they don’t lower yours, then you might have to stop doing business with them.

Other Options

If none of these options apply or won’t work, ask about having part of your debt forgiven through consolidation or refinancing. You could also ask for an extension on any due dates, or even get yourself declared temporarily unable to pay (in which case you’ll only owe the interest until the next time you get a regular payment amount).

Debt Relief for Consumers

These debt relief options can work for your credit cards, personal loans, and other types of debt. If none of these will help you solve your current balance problems, then consider one of the following helpful alternatives or speak to the reps at

Debt Management– Work with a company that specializes in negotiating on behalf of consumers to break large balances into smaller monthly payments based on the consumer’s income and financial situation.

Nonprofit Credit Counseling – Organizations certified by nonprofit associations have been investigated and approved as being trustworthy by this type of organization. In some cases, you may also be able to get free advice through their counseling services or even qualify to have part or all your debt forgiven through them.

Debt Consolidation – By consolidating all your monthly debts into one monthly payment, you’ll be able to free up more money each month that can then go towards paying off your debt. And it’s easier than ever since there are so many loan options available today for this kind of purpose.

Debt Relief vs Debt Consolidation

There’s often confusion between debt consolidation and debt relief. While they have some similarities, most consumer finance experts agree that the key difference is the following:

Debt Consolidation

  • Goal is to reduce debts
  • Combines several loans into one
  • Can create a new bill for a consolidated loan
  • Usually has lower rates
  • May result in not receiving benefits from credit counseling often offered by non-profits

Debt Relief

  • Goal is to avoid having debts
  • Makes a single monthly payment on all debts due
  • Can prevent creditor lawsuits
  • Usually has higher rates than consolidating with another lender
  • May free up funds for savings or other uses, as well as allow you to work on budgeting plans to help pay off your debts faster over time.

As can be seen from these guidelines, debt relief can have significant benefits over debt consolidation when it comes to monthly payments. However, each kind of service is helpful depending on what your specific needs are in terms of repaying your debts.

Smart Debt Relief and Payoff Options

Based on your financial situation, you may be able to get help from your creditor in lowering your monthly payment or interest rate on one or more of your loans. You may also need to consider other options that are available for consumers struggling with debt.

John Otero

John Otero

John Otero is an industry practitioner with more than 15 years of experience in the insurance industry. He has held various senior management roles both in the insurance companies and insurance brokers during this span of time. He began his insurance career in 2004 as an office assistant at an agency in her hometown of Duluth, MN. He got licensed as a producer while working at that agency and progressed to serve as an office manager. Working in the agency is how he fell in love with the industry. He saw firsthand the good that insurance consumers experienced by having the proper protection. John has diverse experience in corporate & consumer insurance services, across a range of vocations. His specialties include Major Corporate risk management and insurance programs, and Financial Lines He has been instrumental in making his firm as one of the leading organizations in the country in generating sustainable rapid growth of the company while maintaining service excellence to clients.

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