Generally, personal loan interest rates are lower than interest on other types of unsecured debt, so you’ll save money over the life of the debt.
They’re also fixed-rate loans, so the interest rate won’t fluctuate the way a credit card rate can.
Credit counseling through a reputable non-profit agency is almost always a better alternative.
Credit counselors work to help you negotiate with your creditors and formulate a debt management plan (or DMP) to help you pay off your existing debts.
The program length will depend on the information provided by your account holders, such as balances and interest rates.
Any missed payments under the plan could negatively impact the program length with changes in interest rates and additional fees and charges that could increase balances.
Debt settlement involves accounts being reported as settled for less than originally agreed. With a debt management plan, you’ll make one monthly payment to the credit counselor, who will then disburse the funds as agreed to your creditors until your debt is paid off.
Keep in mind that you’ll have multiple accounts that depend on your monthly payment.
If your credit is good, you may be able to qualify for a personal loan that you can use to pay off high-interest debts such as credit cards.
What’s more, if you continue the credit use habits that got you in trouble in the first place – like not making on-time payments – you could wind up even deeper in debt.
Another option for people with good credit scores may be to transfer balances from high-interest credit cards to a card with a lower interest rate.
Let them know you’re struggling and ask them for help.
Don’t wait to make the call until you just can’t afford to pay them anymore or your account has been turned over to a collections agency. Creditors may be willing to accept a reduced payment, lower your interest rate and waive fees and penalties rather than see you default on the amount you owe.