Like take a loan out to consolidate debt, debt settlement is not something you want to just jump into.  Consider your debt relief solutions and tax implications before signing an agreement with a debt settlement company.

1. First, determine how much debt you have(specifically unsecured debt no including student loans) Request a copy of your credit report from one of the main credit reporting agencies. You could view your credit report with a credit repository company like Trans Union, Experian or Equifax.

2. Have you spoken to a debt settlement company about qualifying?  In most cases, debt settlement companies only work with people who owe more than $7,500. There may be other requirements as well. Read through the information provided by the debt settlement company. Make sure you meet all the requirements.

3. Determine if you have the money for debt settlement. Subtract from your monthly income your normal living expenses, including housing, transportation, utilities, food, and insurance. If you have money left over, then debt settlement may be right for you. If you don’t, you should not try credit card debt settlement.

4. Search for a debt settlement company. Don’t sign with the first company you find. Instead, read through what services they provide and what they expect from you. Look for debt relief companies that have been in business for a while. Make sure the debt settlement companies you are working with have been approved by the Better Business Bureau.

5. Decide if debt settlement is the best option for you. With debt settlement, you can reduce the total amount you owe and improve the relationship between you and your creditors. Also, you can pay your debt quicker as long as you remain faithful to the credit card settlement offer.

Debt settlement can also incur potential tax problems, and may hurt your credit rating. It may encourage your creditors to initiate law suits against you. Also, it could increase the frequency of calls to you by your creditors.  Read more at http://www.ehow.com/how_2002294_compare-consolidation-settlement.html

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