Debt problems can cause serious budget problems. These agencies can help residents deal with debt problems.
Credit card debt can cause any budget to bend and then ultimately break. Finance charges alone can eat up more money each month than a utility bill.
Most cardholders are unaware of just how little of each minimum payment goes towards the principal. Barbados has been largely ignored in the global push for improved credit and debt counselling access.
Falling behind on a car payment can risk repossession and bad credit. Plus, it takes away the primary method for getting to work.
Aid organisations can sometimes assist with helping someone who is having trouble making a car payment. Getting actual cash towards late payments is possible but relatively rare.
Instead, counsellors may be able to convince the lender to accept an alternate arrangement. Borrowers may also do this on their own behalf. Alternate arrangements may include:
- Schedule to catch up on arrears,
- a loan modification agreement to move 1-2 skipped payments (60-day payment holiday) to the back of the loan, or
- obtaining a separate loan to use to catch up the car payment.
Other types of loans and debts may be assisted with, including personal loans, medical bills and home mortgages. Getting these under control may be possible with the right advice.
In some cases it may be advantageous to start all over again. Bankruptcy is not a pleasant process but it can at least provide some protection from creditors that may pursue a court order for repayment. By filing for bankruptcy protection, a debtor may get a fresh start.
Due to the complexities of Barbados bankruptcy laws, it is generally recommended to utilise the services of a reputable bankruptcy attorney. These lawyers understand the challenges faced and are able to proceed with the best possible outcome for their clients.
Tax debt is the most important liability to pay. The government will provide payment plans to those who make a reasonable effort to repay taxes owed. The same is true of the unpopular municipal solid waste tax.
Ignoring debt is never a good idea. When debt causes problems, making a change can often be the best idea. It just takes a bit of work to ensure that the best option is chosen.