Far from the many myths flying around on the internet, debt collectors are trying to make things better for you, not worse.
Granted, a collector or account receivable agent’s reputation precedes them, however, those practices are long gone as collections have come a long way since then. In general, today’s collectors are compassionate and empathetic citizens that work in strict accordance with the Consumer Credit Protection Act (CCPA). Rather than making things more difficult, they are actually there to help you resolve your debt situation.
How Collection Agencies Can Help You
A reputable collection agency will try to help you in several ways. For example, the
1. Adopt a flexible and realistic approach to payment
Common considerations often include whether you’re currently on a fixed low income, such as welfare payments, or experiencing financial difficulties. If you’re presently paying multiple debts, the repayment plan can be adjusted to reflect those difficulties.
The agency will also make reasonable allowances for your ongoing living expenses.
2. Offer alternative payment methods to ease the payment process
Sometimes, debtors delay in making repayments because of day-to-day inconveniences such as travel and personal/work commitments. Most collectors now offer (or are willing to discuss) alternative payment methods, including credit card, mobile, check, and more recently, the use of collection agency software . Collection agency software allows you
to pay anywhere, anytime, at your convenience.
3. Exhaust every option before sending you to the credit bureau
Sending your name to the bureau is always the option of last resort. Usually, it means that there are no other viable solutions to explore. But, until all options are exhausted, the collector will do everything they can to avoid this step.
What to do if the Collection Agency Calls
Despite the above points, facing the debt collector can still feel scary. Indeed, many people would rather avoid the encounter altogether.
Unfortunately, sometimes, it happens. Maybe you’ve been in a dire financial situation recently. You did your best to repay but just couldn’t pull things off. Now the collector is
Don’t feel bad! Here’s what you should do:
● Understand that the collector is simply doing their job
Collectors are hired by lenders to attempt to recover the money owed by debtors. They are acting under the instruction of the lender and, just like you, are at work. They have nothing against you. More importantly, your creditor has a right to their money, right?
● Be honest and cooperative
On first contact, the collector is usually looking for one thing – a commitment to repay the owed amount. All you have to do is be honest and cooperative. Pick up the phone and discuss the matter, tell them about your financial situation, and assure them that
you intend to pay. That’s all.
● Agree to a payment plan
The best part is that the agency will even let you propose a payment plan with which you’re most comfortable. Whether you’d like to pay smaller amounts over a longer period or close the debt in a lump sum, the collector will listen.
● If you have issues, raise them
Perhaps you dispute the debt. Maybe you think you’ve already paid it back. Or, maybe it’s the amount. Maybe you feel it’s not what you owe. Collectors will listen and are even prepared to provide their collection agency software so you can track your repayments.
So, Understand, They’re Just Trying to Help
Delays and even defaulting on debt repayment isn’t a crime. It happens to the best of us. The collection agency is just trying to help you find a resolution to the problem and bring closure to unpaid invoices. Perceive them as an advisor rather than an enemy and
you will soon find yourself free of debt!