Credit card debt assistance programs.
Some companies, such as Capital One, Bank of America, Chase and others have started credit card payment assistance programs to help consumers. The programs can help borrowers reduce and eliminate outstanding credit card debt as well as help them with bills.
The assistance programs listed below go by various names, such as a hardship program, debt management plans, and others. While each issuer will offer their own assistance programs and they will come with different terms as well as conditions, there are options available. Here are a few of the credit card debt assistance programs now being offered to card holders and those struggling with paying their bills. There are also tips for each and every person to take so they can reduce their debt and monthly payments on their own.
Types of credit card debt assistance plans
Credit card companies defer payments - Most bank and lenders will allow the customer to skip a payment or put payment on a hold status. This in effect is a payment deferral. It is often offered as an emergency solution when their is a financial crisis, natural disaster, furloughed jobs, or some other unusual circumstances. This type of deferment is generally offered as a form of relief or part of a hardship or forbearance program from the bank. Read more on credit card companies payment deferrals.
Plans That Suspend Fees - Some credit card companies will mail customers a letter notifying them that the past due fees and other charges that may be due for the current month will be suspended if they are currently three payments behind. They waive these fees only if the customer makes at least one payment on their account. After receiving this notice, if you then contact the credit card company you can request additional assistance with paying your bill. The bank may then offer you information on other hardship programs or give applications on further credit card debt assistance programs they offer.
The lenders are creative in what they may offer the customer. For many companies, they will offer at least two additional months of past due fees being suspended if you can make three additional monthly credit card bill payments. The point is to provide the borrower more time. In addition to this, successful participation in the assistance programs will result in your accounts being reinstated as current and possibly even improve your credit scores. Find other ways to improve credit scores on your own.
Credit Card Assistance Programs That Help Bring Your Account To Current Status - If you are one of the many who have fallen behind on making your credit card payments on time then you will know how difficult it can be to catch up on your bills. Even if you have missed just one or two payments, your outstanding balance will grow quickly as numerous fees, penalties and interest costs are applied. It is a major problem for low to moderate income families.
Now some companies are providing assistance to consumers that will allow them to qualify for financial aid if they make one minimum payment. The credit card issuer will then bring your account to current status. This assistance can help someone keep their account in good standing and help reduce fees and other costs. These solutions go by many names, including hardship programs or debt management. Read more on credit card hardship.
Other support may be given by your lender as well. More and more credit card companies are pro-actively settling credit card debts, which will bring your account current. It can also reduce the balance on an borrowers account. Also, many speculate that the government is putting pressure on banks to offer consumers assistance. More on government help with debt.
Lower Your Monthly Payment By Negotiation - There are countless consumers who would love to, and who try their hardest, to make the minimum payment on their monthly credit card bills yet they unfortunately find that they are unable to afford that minimum monthly payment. Maybe they are behind due to struggles in the current economic climate or with their personal financial situation.
To help with this issue, a tip is that some creditors are now willing to negotiate a smaller minimum monthly payment that these consumers can afford to pay on a monthly basis. Everything is up to negotiation. You need to call your creditor and ask if your minimum payment can be lowered to help keep up your end of the financial obligation and also provide the credit card issuer some cash. Find additional ways to negotiate debt.
These credit card debt assistance programs are designed with consumers who are experiencing a true financial hardship or emergency. Every single bank and issuer will have some type of plan to offer its customers. As an example, Discover Card also several programs that are well regarded.
In other words, if you are able to pay your credit card bills and just want a “break” or a little relief, then a lender may not offer assistance. If you are only looking for a quick and easy way to lower your credit card payments, then these assistance programs are not for you. Try talking to a counselor in this case.
Truth be told, if you have the income, assets or resources to pay your credit card payments in a timely manner these programs are not for you as they may result in negative credit scores on your account. So their are downsides to requesting assistance from a lender.
If the credit card company hasn’t contacted you directly about any financial aid, what you should do is contact your creditor(s) to let them know you are having difficulty paying the account. Be pro-active as communication is key to reducing your debt and staying on track. Different credit card companies, banks and other creditors may offer different types of assistance. As there are variations of credit card assistance programs so you need to be sure to contact all of your creditors to see what is available. Also, find out about additional programs for how to get out of credit card debt and find help.
The bottom line is that if you need assistance paying your credit card debts or monthly bills, there are numerous places to turn to for support. Almost every lender offers relief..
Tips for how to get rid of credit card debt.
Here are additional tips that can assist you with getting rid of your credit card debt. All of these are things that borrowers can do themselves. They are in addition to the assistance programs above.
1. Never charge what you can't afford in order to reduce your need for credit card debt assistance
You need to avoid creating a credit card debt or payment that you can't manage .Live within your means and income. It is very important that you do not use your credit cards irresponsibly and that you don't buy things that you couldn't otherwise afford to buy if you had used cash.
This tends to be the most difficult thing for many people as we are a nation of consumers, but unfortunately there is no simple solution to this. It is just a matter of discipline and willpower.
2. Do not carry your credit cards all the time
If every time you leave your house you carry your credit card, it is too easy to pull it out when you see something you would like to buy and charge it. In other words, if you do not have the card with you, it means you'll have to go home and then return to the store, which gives you a chance to reconsider the purchase in the first place. Or it means you will use cash, which may make you think twice before buying something. Eliminate credit card debt by not creating it in the first place!
3. Don't apply for more credit cards than you need, which is usually one
In truth, most people only really need 1 credit card. But once you get one you will start getting applications in the mail for many more. They are not needed! Having more cards than the necessary (one) just creates more opportunities for poor spending and a higher chance of an increased debt load.
4. Consider getting a line of credit instead of a credit card
If you have assets, such as a home or have other forms of assets such as a savings account, you should be able to qualify for a line of credit from your bank. This tip is a great alternative for most families. A credit line will almost always have a much lower interest rate (and thus monthly payments) than a credit card if you need to carry a balance.
In addition, you can usually get a Mastercard or Visa "debit" card that charges things to your account instead of a credit card account. This will give you the same convenience, but a more reasonable interest rate on your expenses, if you carry a balance. The growth of these debit cards has indirectly helped consumers control their spending habits, and has provided assistance in reducing and controlling debts.
5. Seek credit card debt assistance if your debt is out of control
Trying to deal with credit card debt on your own is one of the most stressful things that people need to do. It can lead to all kinds of other problems (stress, divorces, job loss) if it's allowed to continue. You can get assistance from a number of places.
There are many debt reduction and credit counseling organizations as well as free services that can help you create a plan for eliminating, or repaying your credit cards. Professionals can offer help for getting control of all of your debt. These companies can't help you, however, unless you take the first step in contacting them.