A reader sent me in a mailer he received from FSC or FSC Credit Card Plan Service. They say they are located at 4907 N. Florida Avenue, Tampa, FL. That happens to be the address of Fresh Start Credit Solutions. – Source
Why the mailer just doesn’t say Fresh Start Credit Solutions is a bit of a mystery to me. Why not be proud of that? But then again FSC is a registered fictitious name for them. – Source
The mailer says the debt relief program will be administered by FSCS. Again, why not just say who they are?
New York, where the consumer lives who received the mailer, says the company is not registered to do business there.
Whenever I get mailers I go and visit the website of the company to see what they are saying to consumers. According to the BBB the website for this company is freshstartcreditsolutions.org.
On the mailer, it says the debt the consumer has is between $10,000 and $20,000 and the “monthly set-aside payment” is $168.75 but looking at their website it looks like the lowest monthly minimum payment for $10,000 is $183.21 and for $20,000 it is $334.23.
If you dive a little deeper and use their calculator on the site you get the following results.
Using the calculator the lowest payment for $10,000 is shown as $208.28 and for $20,000 it is $356.62.
The numbers are all over the board and for the life of me I can’t figure out how they came up with the monthly payment in the mailer since it does not seem to represent any of the other numbers on their own website.
Long-time readers will know I have a pet peeve with the age-old argument that bankruptcy and credit counseling are bad but debt settlement is more advantageous. The Fresh Start Credit Solutions website says “Another option for your debt relief is called Debt Settlement. It’s one of the more popular options when you want to do the right thing, you don’t want a public record of Bankruptcy and you want the opportunity to pay LESS than you owe.” – Source
My belief is if you are going to upsell debt settlement that you should be open about all the issues. Settling debt results in potential legal action and a negative credit report entry for seven years as the defaulted debt is reported by the creditor. It can often take significantly longer and cost more than bankruptcy.
Fresh Start Credit Solutions says, “I don’t trust the bank has my interests at heart. I need a solution to my debt problem that takes into consideration my unique hardship.” – Source
Each debt option has pros and cons but I think they fail to explain that. I try to lay that out in my chart over on this page.
The right debt option for the consumer is the one that makes the most sense for them based on their individual situation. It seems that’s what Fresh Start Credit Solutions says in bold letters but appears to miss the mark with the sales language I quoted above.
I think people should not pick solutions first until they understand the pros and cons each major type of solution has to offer.
Hopefully, Fresh Start Credit Solutions will take this opportunity to revisit the mailer they are sending out to consumers.