Many people are experiencing sudden changes in daily life ranging from job loss to shortages of basic needs. In this time of uncertainty, many are wondering what options are available for help and where that help will come from especially when dealing with consumer debt.
Our government has recently created legislation to help those that have been affected by COVID-19. Unemployment will now provide additional funds to those that have lost their jobs due to the virus. In addition, stimulus checks will provide households with additional funds.
Since the COVID-19 virus is a widespread pandemic and is affecting people across the world, some creditors are also jumping in to help their clients. Many are offering temporary programs to defer payments for a month or two without negative impact on credit reports. These are temporary measures to help buy time in order to get finances back on track. Your first step if you are struggling with payments should be to reach out to your creditors directly and express your concerns. Be prepared though, because due to staffing issues there may be a longer than normal wait to speak with a representative.
If you fear you will be experiencing a more long-term problem and the temporary assistance offered by your creditors might just be a band aid, please contact a non-profit Credit Counseling Agency. An organization like RethinkingDebt can provide you with a more long-term solution called the Debt Management Program (DMP). The DMP is a pre-determined set of agreements with credit card companies to provide reduced interest rates and potentially lower monthly payments that will allow you to pay off your debts in five years or less. The appointment is free, so give us a call and speak with a certified credit counselor today.