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Avoiding the Pitfalls of Debt Consolidation

Lisett Comai-Legrand

Lisett Comai-Legrand About The Author

Jan 14, 2020 6:13:00 AM

For people with more than one form of consumer debt, a consolidation loan can be a great way to manage overall debt. While these this debt consolidation help may seem like a perfect way out of a difficult financial situation, you should be aware of the drawbacks that come with them. This article will help provide you with knowledge and information on the ways to avoid the pitfalls of debt consolidation loans.

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Understand the Types of Debt Consolidation Loans

Man Needing Debt Consolidation Help | First Alliance Credit UnionA debt consolidation loan is a loan that allows you to pay off other pending loans with more pressing deadlines. This new loan is meant to have relatively flexible terms when compared with other loans, thus providing you with more time to repay the total amount. There are different kinds of debt consolidation loans, each having unique structure and terms. Let’s take a closer look at them: 

Secured Loans for Debt Consolidation

Secured loans are the type of loans in which the borrower places a valuable asset as collateral in the case of default. Secured loans have relatively flexible terms and good rates, but can be costly if the debtor is unable to pay back the loan in time.

Unsecured Loans for Debt Consolidation

There is no asset or property involved in unsecured loans. As a result, the interest rates and payment terms are fixed.

Fixed Loans for Debt Consolidation

Fixed loans may have higher interest rates in the initial stages, but they are preferred by many borrowers because of their stable rates. The interest rates are fixed and are not affected by the ever-changing market rates. This relieves the debtors from any rising market rates and allows them to plan payments accordingly.

Variable Loans for Debt Consolidation

The initial interest rates of these loans may be lower than fixed loan rates, but that depends upon current market rates. This type of loan can greatly benefit you in a situation where interest rates fall. However, in many cases, the interest rates keep rising and put additional pressure on the debtor.

Understand the Relationship Between Interest Rates and a Loan's Cost

It is important to understand that the actual cost of the loan is not the money you borrowed, but the interest rate that is applied to it. Some borrowers aren’t well-versed in financial technicalities, so they are lured by extended periods of loan repayment. Companies that offer unusually lengthy times of payment may increase interest rates in order to increase the overall cost of the loan. When choosing a company to borrow money from, don’t focus only on longer time-frames for repayment. Instead, choose a company that offers lower interest rates with manageable repayment time frames.

Look for the Terms Within the Terms

Many borrowers fall prey to the “terms within the terms” of debt consolidation loans. While they may seem easy and straightforward, it is very important to go through each clause of the agreement to fully understand the terms before signing the deal. This helps you find out any hidden charges or varying interest rates.

Debt Plan on Blackboard | First Alliance Credit UnionHave a Plan to Repay Your Debt Consolidation Loan

In many cases, debt consolidation loans are used as a means to avert a desperate situation. However, some borrowers neither have the resources nor the planning to find a way to pay back the loan. Always make sure to have a budget that allows the loan to be repaid.

Get Debt Consolidation Help at First Alliance Credit Union

Debt consolidation loans can be some of the best tools to manage debt repayment. However, debt consolidation loans come with their own pitfalls. A detailed knowledge of these loans is helpful in avoiding the disadvantages of debt consolidation.

Are you ready to consolidate your debts? Make this your year to get debt free and  become a First Alliance Credit Union member today. Our expert team of loan advisors will work with you to get a secured debt consolidation loan with the lowest possible interest rate.

You can also download our free debt consolidation calculator to help you decide if consolidating your debt will help you gain control over your debt.