Debt Relief Industry Forecasts and Trends Marketing

Debt Relief Providers to See General Slowdown Until Credit Loosens

As part of what I’m seeing out in the debt relief world, the demand for debt relief services in general is slowing for everybody in the debt relief space.

It’s been interesting to watch credit counseling blame debt settlement, and debt settlement blame bankruptcy and bankruptcy blame everyone for the lower demand for services.

I just posted an article on lower bankruptcy filings for the tail of 2010 from the year before and I expect to see filings, when compared for the same time period last year, drop.

Jay Fleishman, a bankruptcy attorney that helps other bankruptcy attorneys market their practices just told me “Lots of my consumer bankruptcy lawyer colleagues are in slowdown mode and have been for some time.” On Twitter (@JayFleishman) he said “Too many lawyers flooded the field when the recession hit. So now people are just broke and angry.”

This just reinforces what I’ve been saying.

My opinion is it’s time for good debt relief to stop sinking money into finding just those few consumers that match your niche solution and instead widen your solution base to serve all the consumers that contact you.

With a falling number of consumers that need bankruptcy, debt settlement, or credit counseling; trying to compete just for your niche client is only going to get more expensive since acquisition costs will remain steady or increase as the demand for the smaller audience of consumers who need X solution, falls.

The irony is that while many debt settlement companies are angry and blame regulation and the government for killing their industry, the fact is the shrinking demand for services was doing that already. Consumers that are stone broke don’t have money for repayment solutions. The most at risk solution to this slowdown is probably credit counseling that provides little to no monthly payment reduction.

Debt relief services will always be needed but until credit begins to loosen up and consumers start absorbing new debt, expect demand for debt relief help to only continue to trend downward.


You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.

I can always use your help. If you have a tip or information you want to share, you can get it to me confidentially if you click here.

About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.


  • No one should ever pay all fees upfront. Maybe a nominal 1 to 3 percent paid over the first 3 payments giving the client the ability to save immediately and for companies to settle or get into a term settlement on at least 1 or more accounts within the first 6 months. Also we wouldn’t have these regulations if companies didn’t charge all fees up front. If you think about it, what incentive does a company have to settle your debt if you pay all the fees up front and where does the money come to settle if you are paying them in full first? Our company has always been performanced based, IF WE DON’T SETTLE YOU DON’T PAY A SETTLEMENT FEE it’s that simple. We have also always charge between 10-15 percent and that was including the 1-3 percent retainer fee. Clients actually can cut 6 months to a year off the program by the companies charging the 10 to 15 percent. Just makes sense and will lead to more referrals because they are happy. It’s also less risky for someone to know that they will only pay a settlement fee if the account is settled and that is what’s fair. The companies who took these poor peoples money and did no work for them and had no regard for them as humans should be sitting next to Bernie Madhoff cause that’s what i compare them too. ALot of elderly people who got taken advantage of can’t go and grab a shovel and dig a hole for extra money it is just sad. All of this stems my motivation to change the industry and then the world one debt at a time.

  • Would that explain a decrease in searches for credit counseling, debt settlement and bankruptcy? See these charts. I’d love to see your data to see where it does not match the aggregated data from Google to see a different side.

  • Excellent point! If people are crazy enough to believe everything that Steve rants & raves about they will never even consider debt settlement! He bashes everyone except for his affiliates who fill his pockets! Bad actor?? Steve needs to look in the mirror!

Leave a Comment

Scroll to Top