Debt Consolidation Possibilities

Updated on September 30, 2010
O.S. asks from Birmingham, AL
8 answers

Loans to consolidate credit card balances are especially hard to find right now but I desperately want to do this to stop the revolving credit and get out from under them. I've not been late on a payment but my interest rates have spiked along with everyone. It is becoming increasingly hard to pay them along with anything unexpected during the month in our family. I make about $30,000 a year and that's too much to file bankruptcy but not enough for our famly to hardly survive on. My husband was a carpenter whose company crashed and nothing at all coming in for a few months. We kept making our regular payments on our things and also on one house that it took him about a year to sell. We need to consolidate about $35,000 of unsecured debt but just don't know what route to take. He now has a job (yea!) but it seems impossible to keep our credit cards paid and have enough left for food, cars and medical appointments when needed. IF you have had personal experience with a debt consolidation company, let me know how it went, would you recommend it to others. So many scams out there and don't want another negative for us. THANK YOU!!!!

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answers from Boise on

Don't do it. By Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover for like $15 and follow his plan. You can do this.

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answers from Detroit on

Where did you hear that you make too much to file bankruptcy? My yearly base salary is $45,500 and I filed.

Also, there are many different forms of bankruptcy. I filed Chapter 7. That is where all of my debt (unsecured at aprox $20,000) was 'wiped away'.

Then you have Chapter 13 which acts like a consolidation loan under which the individual makes the plan payments to a chapter 13 trustee who then distributes payments to creditors. Individuals will have no direct contact with creditors while under chapter 13 protection.

Also, if the debt is in only your name, you can file alone (not including your hubby). You can get a free consult with a bankruptcy lawyer and they will be able to tell you your best option and who to go to for consolidation if that is an option.

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answers from Austin on

Don't do it. It is as bad as filing bankruptcy on your credit report. You can do the same thing as the company would do. Read, The total money makeover by Dave Ramsey. Listen to his radio show, take his class and learn how to deal with your money.


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answers from Minneapolis on

I don't think that you make too much to file a bankruptcy. I would check with a good bankruptcy lawyer to examine all of your options. I wouldn't wait, though, as your husband just went back to work and that option could go away for you.

Good luck!

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answers from Cleveland on

My advice would be to absolutely do this as a last resort. Consolidating your debt can DESTROY your credit.
Are you with a bank or a credit union? I have heard that credit unions provide really good options, but I don't know from personal experience.
My personal experience started this past spring. We found a bank that allowed us to open a line of credit for the amount of our current debt (no more, so we weren't tempted to spend more money) for an interest rate that was far less than what we were paying on our credit cards. Then we used the new line of credit to pay off the other cards and now have one payment per month at a lower interest rate. We still make the same payment amount as we did before, but since we are paying less interest we will be able to pay it off much faster. Hope that makes sense!



answers from Tampa on

Check out Suzy Orman's website. Don't use a consolidating company- They don't do anything that you can't do on your own, but they charge $$$$. best wishes!


answers from Denver on

Years ago, I used Consumer Credit Couseling. Not really debt consolidation but it worked that way for me - one payment to them and they paid the credit card companies after negotiating lower interest rates.

If you go this route, be sure it's a real CCC. There are some scams that model themselves after CCC. Probably more now than 10 years ago.

Good luck!



answers from Pittsburgh on

Don't CONsolidate. Bad idea--ALWAYS.
Get Dave Ramsay's book Total Money Makeover and do it yourself.

FYI--I don't think there's an income requirement for bankruptcy it's more debt/income ratio (yours is high!)

BUT do this yourself--the old fashioned way--use Dave's (FREE--except for the book -- or get it at the library) plan and dig OUT. It CAN be done. Might as well do it without wrecking what credit you have. But you've gotta VCUT UP all of those cards TODAY. Good luck!

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