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United States of Debt – Audio

debt

Upon entering the Eastside Arts Alliance in East Oakland, it’s clear that this a special kind of conference. On the welcome table is a stack of name tag stickers, the kind that usually read “Hello, My Name Is…” But these stickers read: “Hello, My DEBT Is…” These badges are stuck onto the shirts of many of the 70-some people here, ... Read More »

    FTC Goes After Vehicle Loan Debt Relief Assistance Services

    ftc

    The Federal Trade Commission recently filed a sealed complaint against Regency Financial Services, Ivan Levy; AKA Fidelity Holdings, Levy Fidelity Holdings, Ivan Levy Regency Holdings, BJI Enterprises. The FTC alleges the following in the complaint: “Since at least 2009, Regency, acting primarily through co-defendant Ivan Levy, has perpetrated a vehicle loan assistance relief services scam. Regency preys on consumers who ... Read More »

      7 Student Loan Terms to Know to Save the Most Money

      confused

      While applying for and receiving student loans is easier than in years past, many students sign up for heavy debt burdens without familiarizing themselves with important loan terms. Without knowing basic terminology, students are unable to competitively shop for loans, and choose the one that works best for them. Here are a few key terms to know: Principal – The ... Read More »

        Weekly Syndicated Get Out of Debt Column February 6, 2015

        End of stress.

        Money, Credit and Debt Advice – Get Out of Debt Guy Question: My Student Loans Leave Me Hopeless Dear Steve, I can’t believe how much student loan debt I have. It feels like I can barely get by each month and there is no way for me to ever get out from under these loans. I have both federal and ... Read More »

          Potential Good News for Debt Relief Companies. Balances Increasing.

          Credit Card Delinquency Rates

          For debt relief companies who have been suffering from a lack of consumer demand, there is news out today that indicates demand might be increasing in the near-term. TransUnion says “total outstanding credit card balances increased 5% on a yearly basis. The increase indicates record growth, the highest yearly growth observed since 2008.” If this trend continues then in a ... Read More »

            5 Year Club Fed Stretch for Mortgage Relief Promoter

            mans hands behind bars in jail or prison

            WASHINGTON, DC – Christy Romero, Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP); Benjamin B. Wagner, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of California; and Kamala D. Harris, Attorney General for the State of California today announced that Ray Jan Kornfeld, 59, of Las Vegas, Nev., was sentenced on February 19, 2015, to five years in federal ... Read More »

              Why Income Based Student Loan Payments Can Be a Terrible Trap

              danger

              What Student Loan Assistance Companies Are Not Telling You With the surge in companies that are selling student loan assistance programs it seems their product is most commonly just filling out paperwork to enroll people in income driven repayment programs for federal student loans. It’s an easy sale, “We Can Lower Your Payment,” is a powerful message that resonates with ... Read More »

                FTC Goes After Debt Relief Companies Who Deal With Payday Loans

                ftc

                On February 18, 2015 the Federal Trade Commission filed suit against PSC Administrative, Coastal Acquisitions, Infinity Client Solutions, Infinity Collect, Jared Irby, and Richard Hughes for violations of the Telemarketing Sales Rule. The FTC alleges the Defendants solicited consumers with debt relief services, who owed payday loans. “Defendants have induced consumers to enroll in their program by claiming that they ... Read More »

                  These Student Loan Facts Make Me Want to Vomit

                  sad-woman

                  The Federal Reserve Bank of New York just published information that makes me concerned for the financial future of consumers who fall into the student loan trap. Despite what people feel or say, there are still affordable ways to get a college education without going $175,000 in debt for a graphic arts bachelors degree. The value of a good community ... Read More »

                    Student Loan Default Rates Really Suck

                    student loan default rates

                    Today, the New York Fed released the Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit for the fourth quarter of 2014. The report is based on data from the New York Fed’s Consumer Credit Panel, a nationally representative sample drawn from anonymized Equifax credit data. Overall, aggregate balances increased by $117 billion, or 1.0 percent, boosted by increases in all credit ... Read More »

                      What to Do if Sued by National Collegiate Student Loan Trust for Not Paying Private Student Loans

                      Student Loans Concept

                      Question. What are my options if I have been sued by National Collegiate Student Loan Trust? Answer. Getting served with a lawsuit isn’t an enjoyable experience. If you aren’t familiar with the legal process, it can leave you confused, anxious and overwhelmed. I have spoken with a fair number of people that have been sued after they stopped paying their ... Read More »

                        Consumer Financial Problems Not Limited to America

                        malay

                        I spotted a recent article out of Singapore where the Association of Muslim Professionals (AMP) had expressed a concern over the level of indebtedness local households of Malays were facing. If you extracted the local references out of the article it sounds just like the problems faced by people in Iowa or Texas. “While household balance sheets remain generally healthy, ... Read More »

                          Debt Management Credit Counseling Publishes Debt Consolidation Video

                          confused man

                          Last week Debt Management Credit Counseling sent out the press release below. Two things struck me as a bit odd about it so I emailed the company to ask for clarification. As of yet I’ve not heard back from them so I’ll just publish the release and my observations and if they ever respond, I’ll update the post with their ... Read More »

                            WARNINGS About Credit Counseling Programs and Long Term Debt Repayment Plans

                            Adult Ed - Questions

                            In my first article in this series I outlined many benefits you get from working with a credit counseling agency. But there are also drawbacks to enrolling in a DMP (debt management plan) in order to get credit card payment relief. And the concerns are not minor, which is why the word WARNING is capitalized. As with any of the ... Read More »

                              Department of Ed FFEL Joint Consolidation Rules Arbitrary & Punitive

                              stressed woman

                              Not that long ago I wrote an article, “This is One Way to Get FFEL Spousal Consolidation Loans Forgiven” in which a reader was looking for a way to deal with her previous FFEL spousal joint consolidation loan with her ex-husband. She wanted to move forward in a positive way in dealing with her student loan debt that was originally ... Read More »

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