Memphis Associates loan offers are bait and switch. Memphis Associates has begun flooding the market with debt consolidation and credit card relief offers in the mail with the website mymemphisassociates.com. The problem is that the terms and conditions are at the very least confusing, and possibly even suspect. The interest rates are so low that you would have to have near-perfect credit to be approved for one of their offers. Best 2020 Reviews, the personal finance review site, has been following Memphis Associates, Tate Advisors, Plymouth Associates, Neon Funding, Polk Partners, Ladder Advisors (also known as Carina Advisors, Corey Advisors, Pennon Partners, Jayhawk Advisors, Clay Advisors, Colony Associates, and Pine Advisors, etc.).
Best 2020 Reviews closely monitors personal loan offers, debt reduction, and credit card consolidation offers sent through direct mail to consumers.
It’s hard to avoid getting into a debt trap when credit card issuers have made it so easy. To put things in perspective, the US consumer debt stands at a staggering $14.1 trillion, according to Experian data. Unpaid credit card debt accounts for $829 billion, with over 60% of American adults carrying it.
Toss in unexpected financial crises with crippling debt, and you have the perfect formula for a debt crisis. The good news is that many credit card issuers are offering different types of debt relief. The relief plans may apply automatically to your account, but in most cases, you’ll have to make a request for assistance for debt relief.
Fortunately, asking for help requires little more than filling out a form or calling your credit card issuer’s hotline. We’ve rounded up some of the most common types of credit card relief you can request.
New Credit Card Due Date
Most credit card issuers let people pick a due date that aligns with their financial situation, or the date of the month they are paid. Some issuers allow you to change your due date on their cards. In any case, it makes more sense to ask your card issuer to move your account due date closer to the day you get your paycheck or a part of the month that’s convenient for you, such as the beginning or end of the month.
Your credit card issuer may be willing to accommodate your request if it helps with your monthly payments – in most cases, all you have to do is ask. Use this option if buys you more time to get the money together to make your payment. They may even give you more time since Election Day is here.
Many issuers prefer to give you a break on payments than allowing you to fall behind. Depending on your issuer, you may be able to defer your payments for up to 3 months. You might be allowed to use your available credit while the payments are deferred, this depends on the credit card issuer.
However, the interest will continue to accrue on your balance during the forbearance period, so don’t be surprised when the balance increases at the end. Unfortunately, when it comes to debt, there’s no such thing as a free lunch. There are only trade-offs.
Late Fee Waivers
In most cases, credit card issuers are willing to waive late fees for deferral periods. This may not automatically apply to your account from the get-go, which means you’ll have to get in touch with a customer representative request for a waiver. Do not skip payments without getting an approval from your card issuer first, otherwise, you’ll be on the hook for late fees that could damage your credit score.
If this is a new account, your credit card issuers may waive your first late fee or won’t charge any late fees at all. Some cards won’t charge a high penalty APR that kicks in after late payments. Finally, some credit card companies might waive your annual fees as a courtesy.
Credit Line Increase
If you’re about to max out your credit card and are short on cash, you might be able to call your card issuer and request for a bigger credit line. Your issuer may be willing to increase your spending limits if you’ve shown a good record of making timely payments and have been a loyal customer. This process may involve a hard credit check that could potentially affect your credit score (for a few months).
But if you’re short on cash and have to make important payments, the benefits outweigh the risks in the long run.
If you don’t like paying the annual fee on your credit card and the issuer isn’t waiving the fee, you may request for a product change. This will downgrade your account to accommodate a credit card without an annual fee. It’s better to go with this option than to close the card altogether, which will likely damage your credit score (depending on the credit card’s spending limit and how long it was open).
Work with a Credit Counselor
It may be worth your while to work with an accredited credit counseling agency to manage your credit card debt. For a small monthly fee, the credit counselor can reduce your monthly payments negotiate lower interest fees. Just make sure the credit counseling agency is certified by the Financial Counseling Association of America (FCAA) and the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC).
It is highly recommended to explore your options based on your financial situation. Most credit counselors offer free consultations for your needs.
Dispute Charges on Your Credit Card
Finally, it goes without saying that you can dispute charges to your credit card if you didn’t authorize a payment or the merchant didn’t fulfill their end of the bargain. For instance, if you booked a room and the hotel canceled but refuses to give you a refund even after you’ve tried contacting them several times, you can get your credit card issuer involved by filing a dispute on the charge.
Provided you weren’t at fault, you’ll get a refund on your account right away – unless the merchant proves that you actually owe the amount from a loan offer.
You can dispute charges on your credit card directly from your online account. If that’s not an option, call your credit card issuer’s hotline (available on the back of the card).
Will Seeking Relief Affect Your Credit Score?
Some lenders are actively helping customers get debt relief and won’t report missed payments to the credit bureaus as long as they got approved for deferred payments. This gives you the opportunity to handle your immediate financial obligations without worrying about negatively affecting your credit score.
This is why it’s highly recommended to ask for a credit card relief if you need a way out. A few months of debt forbearance, a new due date, or help with some disputed charges might just be what you need to get your finances in order.