Debt relief can be a big help for people when they’re struggling to pay off their bills. But the industry also attracts a lot of people who want to take advantage of those in less fortunate circumstances. Here are some red flags to watch for when spotting debt relief scams.
You Can’t Get Any Resources Without Paying First
This is one of the most typical signs that a seemingly legitimate debt relief agency is actually a scam. No matter who you go to for debt relief services, they should offer you a few basic things free of charge. This might include things like an initial consultation or credit counseling.
When you work with credit counselors, you’re going to get some information on ways you can improve your credit. They can do things like give you basic budgeting advice, or explain your credit score. Many people who are deep in debt will find they need additional services beyond just credit counseling, which is why they then turn to debt relief agencies. Even though you’ll have to pay for debt relief services when you eventually decide to work with an organization, this should come after you’ve received services.
Don’t trust any enterprise that’s requiring upfront payments before they’ve done anything. If it feels wrong, it probably is. And it’s a lot better to move onto the next organization than it is to be ripped off by that one.
What They’re Offering Sounds Impossible
There’s an old saying that goes, “If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” Those words can save you a lot of headaches in life. And they absolutely ring true when it comes to evaluating a debt relief company. There are plenty of legitimate debt relief organizations out there.
Reviews are a great resource for helping determine if the company is legitimate or not. Do some online searching to find reputable, well-reviewed organizations. You can go and look at Freedom Debt Relief reviews, for instance. There, you’ll see real reviews from thousands of people who have enrolled in this particular program.
But it’s important to go into looking for a debt relief company with a skeptical attitude. When trying to find the right company for your needs, it’s better to walk away than to sign up with the wrong people.
Think about it: People seeking out debt relief aren’t typically in a great place financially. Oftentimes, they’re desperate to find a way to unload some of their unmanageable debt. This is exactly the kind of scenario someone might try to take advantage of if they have bad intentions. Do your due diligence and avoid falling into one of these scammers’ traps.
They Promise You To Much – A Sure Sign of a Debt Relief Scam
There are no guarantees in the world of debt relief. Any legitimate agency will acknowledge this aspect of the business. You should see immediate red flags if you encounter a debt relief company that says it can guarantee a certain result for you.
It’s one thing to say that they’ve done X, Y, and Z for past customers; it’s something completely different if a debt relief agency guarantees improvement. It’s wise to just head in a different direction – and fast – if a debt relief agency tries to tell you they can guarantee certain outcomes. That’s just false, and they’re probably going to lie to you in other ways as well.
No one can be totally foolproof when it comes to catching scams. People who want to rip you off will find dastardly ways to make themselves seem legitimate. It’s important to heed online reviews, and just listen to your gut, when deciding if a debt relief company is actually a scam.