I’m a Realtor and Have Never Missed a Payment, Until Now. – Frank


“Dear Steve,

I have $59,000 in unsecured debt. My credit history is very good. I have never been late on any payments. I lost my job of 21 years about 5 years ago and started a new career in real-estate. the last year has killed me and I fear that I will miss payments in the near future. I will not refinance my home.

What do you recommend?


Dear Frank,

When you say that you will not refinance your home that leads me to believe that you have some equity in your home. That can be a problem.

If you can’t afford to make at least the minimum payments on your credit cards, your options are limited. You could check with a debt management company and see what kind of repayment plan they can put together for you but if you are not behind on your cards now, the monthly payment will be fairly close that what you are paying now.

It used to be that creditors would let you cut your monthly payment in half when you were in a debt management program but they stopped doing that. And now, in a debt management program your interest rates might be cut but big deal. If they don’t lower the payment then most people can’t get by.

So if you don’t pay at least the contractual minimum amount due you will wind up in collections, as that lingers and festers it could lead to a lawsuit and a lien placed against your house.

The debt is really secondary to the underlying problem here of being underemployed. I’d suggest that you focus your efforts to bring your income up to a point where you can make at least the minimum payments so you can keep your house out of this mess.


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.
Steve Rhode
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