Credit Counseling Budgeting Before Bankruptcy
Credit counseling is a useful resource for people who have difficulty managing money. It is estimated that nearly half of all Americans have little to no understanding of finance. A large percentage of people do not know how to balance their checkbook. Millions of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck and don't have a dime to invest in their future.
Credit counseling is available to nearly anyone who wants it. There are credit counseling agencies located across the nation. Although nearly all credit counseling companies charge a fee for their services, there are non-profit agencies that provide free services to those who qualify.
Americans who file bankruptcy are required to undergo credit counseling prior to petitioning the court. Debtors must work with an agency approved through the U.S. Trustee Program. Once counseling is completed, the debtor receives a certificate which must be presented to the bankruptcy judge.
Debtors who cannot afford credit counseling can use the Internet to locate information about money management. MyMoney.govoffers a free "My Money" toolkit which provides consumers with valuable information. The kit includes several publications including "Savings Fitness" and "Get the Facts on Savings and Investments".
Another trusted source is DaveRamsey.com. Dave Ramsey offers "My Total Money Makeover", which is a paid money management program. However, Ramsey also provides a wealth of credit repair, credit card and investing advice for free via his website.
Type in "credit counseling" at your favorite search engine and you're certain to locate numerous resources. Be wary when ordering products from companies you aren't familiar with. Unfortunately, many of the products being sold online aren't worth the paper they are printed on. Before plunking down money for credit counseling books or services sold through websites, be certain to conduct research and check with the Better Business Bureau.
Your local library is another great source for free credit counseling information. There are plenty of books sitting on the shelf that can assist you with any type of financial need. From budgeting to investing, the library offers a wealth of information at your fingertips.
Regaining control of your finances is exceptionally powerful. Anyone who has a desire to overcome credit challenges can do so. All it takes is a commitment to become educated about handling your money. Doing so can help you pay off credit cards, eliminate debt and become financially free.