With Your Creditors
Every working adult, or even every unemployed adult for that
matter, knows there will always be bills to pay—there’s just no way around
it. Paying bills is a necessity in
life. In the today’s society, you simply
cannot stay afloat if you fail to pay your bills. Unfortunately,
there’s a bill for absolutely everything; utilities, trash, water, sewer,
taxes, groceries, cell phone, home phone, rent and mortgages, car payments, health insurance, life
insurance, auto insurance, internet, car repairs, routine car maintenance,
kids’ clothes and toys, baby food and supplies, doctor bills—the list just goes
on and on. If you’re a small business owner;
your bills are doubled, tripled, and in some cases, quadrupled.
As mentioned in several previous articles, the U.S. is still
being held within the grips of a recession and the economy is staggering and
faltering. The poor economic status has
resulted in an increase of foreclosures, corporate downsizing and outsourcing,
and higher unemployment rates across the country which has made it more
difficult for the average family and middle-class, blue-collar workforce to pay
even the most basic bills required to get by.
There are several, major reasons bills are not paid;
Failure to Communicate With Creditors
Lack of Income
Failure to Prioritize
Any one of the reasons listed above can singlehandedly
result in unpaid bills, but in most cases, it’s usually a combination of
several or more of them. Did you notice
the very first one? Failure to communicate with your creditors is the biggest
reasons bills are not paid. That’s what
we’re going to discuss today—how and why you should communicate with your
creditors, what are the pros and cons of communicating with your creditors?
With Your Creditors?
Have you ever had a past due bill and told yourself, “I don’t have the money, so no point in
calling, I’ll just pay it when I have the money”—haven’t you told yourself
that before? Or, at the very least, you know someone who says and does
that. Stop it! That’s the worst thing you can do! Always, always, always, communicate with your
creditor! Here are reasons to
communicate with your creditors;
Show Responsibility – When you talk to your creditors regarding your
past due bill, it tells them you’re aware of it, and you honestly want to
resolve the matter. When they see this; creditors are more lenient and more
inclined to make arrangements.
– In most cases, speaking with creditors regarding your past due bill will open
a door of new options on resolving your pas due bill that ordinarily aren’t
available to you if you fail to communicate.
Interruptions – Speaking to creditors and setting arrangements will
surely cancel any scheduled service interruptions or non-payment
disconnections, which usually carry additional fees upon re-connection.
Balance – Many creditors are willing to reduce your payment amount and
will accept partial payments to prevent service interruptions, but this will
only happen if you speak and communicate with them.
– Sometimes, you may just need a little more time to pay a bill; well creditors
love it when you’re calling to simply ask for more time, and you’re not
disputing the amount of the bill or its delinquency—9 of 10 times, you will be
granted extra time.
Alright, this one is simple and self-explanatory—keep records of
your bill payments, usage, and conversations anytime you speak with your
creditors. This also shows you take
responsibility and you’re fully aware of the status of your account and/or
previous conversations regarding it. The
best way to keep records is thru ebilling;
the process of having your bill sent to you by email—this eliminates stacks of
paper mail, and you should also type the important details of your
conversations; who you spoke to, their extension number, the department you
spoke to, arrangement dates and amounts, confirmation numbers, payment methods
(check, credit card, etc).
How to Communicate
How you speak to your creditors
when you do communicate with them is very important. As a former 1st and 3rd
party bill collector and Skip Tracer for over 10 years, I can tell you—DO NOT
shout, yell, cuss, throw un-proved accusations and demand a manager or
supervisor—that is the quickest way to NOT getting the help you need.
Call and speak to your creditors
in a respectful, courteous, and firm tone.
Be honest about having a past due amount and what you’re capable of
paying. DO NOT give a ‘sob’ story—I promise you we’ve heard
them all, and it will fall upon deaf ears.
Ask what are your options and how can you avoid service interruptions.
If you’re calling regarding a
dispute—KNOW what you’re talking about—have your records in front of you, make
sure you have a valid dispute, DO NOT become irate, politely ask for a manager
Know Your Rights
Sometimes when you communicate
with creditors, the representative may be the aggressive person—especially
commission-based, 3rd party bill collectors who often make illegal
threats; you have to know your rights.
The best way to handle 3rd party bill collectors is to know
and what the Mini-Miranda
is. Having knowledge of these two things
will help you tremendously in dealing with aggressive 3rd party bill
collectors; these laws state when and if a bill collector can call you at work,
how often they can call, the consequences for a bill collector failing to
recite the Mini-Miranda, what actual legal action a 3rd party
collector may actually take, and the consequences for a 3rd party
collector threatening action that they are legally unable to pursue.
Now, if you’ve truly paid attention to the paragraph above, you’ll
notice something—the FDCPA and Mini-Miranda is only regarding 3rd
party bill collectors; not 1st party, such as your local utility
companies—again, you will just have
to practice remaining calm, being respectful, professional, and yet firm.
At Ride Now Motors
we want to work with our customers to ensure that we understand the situations
that life has presented to them. Please, always give us the chance to work with
you and come to an understanding as to what we can all expect.