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Debt Review advantages and disadvantages

What is debt counselling?

If you are struggling to pay off your debts, and you’re considering your options, you may have heard about debt counselling (debt review). In order to make a well-informed opinion and see if debt review is a good idea for you, you should consider what the advantages and disadvantages of debt counselling. Before doing that, let's first get clear about what debt review really is.

The truth about debt review

Debt review or debt counselling is a debt relief measure that was introduced by the National Credit Act (NCA) as a way to help South Africans struggling to pay all their debts. It's important to understand that debt review is not a way to avoid paying your debt, it’s instead, a way of managing to pay off what you owe.

If you are over-indebted (unable to make all your debt repayments) and debt collectors are demanding payment from you, debt review can be a good thing in the long run.

How does debt counselling work?

If, after you've applied for debt counselling, a Debt Counsellor finds you to be over-indebted, a Debt Counsellor will set-up a repayment plan for you.

Clients who sign up for debt counselling pay one reduced monthly installment for all their debts.

During the debt review process, a Debt Counsellor takes over all communication with your creditors and the credit bureaus, and you're free to just enjoy your life again without worrying about how you will pay for everything.

Get a detailed overview of the debt counselling process in this blog post.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using debt counselling?

Disadvantages of debt counselling

  • One of the main debt review consequences is that you will not be able to take out credit during the debt review process.
    • This is seen as a debt review disadvantage for people that are stuck in a debt spiral and reliant on debt to fund their everyday expenses. 

Not being able to take on more debt is actually an advantage of debt counselling because now you can give yourself a proper chance at paying off your existing debt. See this as the start of your journey to financial freedom.

  • Your repayments can be extended over a longer period. 
    • In order to reduce your monthly repayment, your debt may need to be paid off over a longer period. However, there is also a negotiation with creditors on your behalf so that your interest rates on your loans can be reduced. This means you can be paying less for your debt in the long term.
  • Debt review will be flagged on your credit report until the process is completed. 
    • This means that your creditors will be able to see that you are listed under debt review during the process. It does not mean you are blacklisted. In fact, when the process is complete, you will have a clean record and any negative information is removed from your credit record.

The advantages of debt counselling

You can reduce your debt repayments by up to 50% giving you breathing room each month.

  • Your Debt Counsellor will negotiate with your creditors to pay less as well as reduce interest rates to reduce your overall outstanding debt.

Your assets cannot be repossessed and will be protected.

  • Debt review is a legal process under the NCA. Creditors cannot initiate any legal action to sell your assets at auction to cover your debt. Creditors cannot proceed with legal action and continue to hassle you for payment.

All creditors are managed by your Debt Counsellor on your behalf.

  • The only thing you have to pay is the ONE affordable monthly payment. We take care of your creditors on your behalf.

Sleepless nights become a thing of the past.

  • You will feel relief immediately when registering for debt review as someone else is taking care of the process for you.

An opportunity at financial freedom.

  • After you have undergone debt counselling, you will have a clean record and feel real financial relief. Your finances will be in order and you can enjoy a new, stress-free life—one where you can actually afford to pay your living expenses.

A chance to apply for new credit after debt review.

  • You will NOT have a permanent record of debt review on your credit report and banks will not discriminate if you've successfully completed the process.
  • After successfully completing the debt counselling process, the debt review flag will be removed from your credit report and there will be NO record of having undergone debt counselling. This means you are free to start applying for credit again.

Meerkat can help you improve your chances of securing credit (loans) in the future. We offer a confidential debt counselling process for people wanting to pay off their debts at a more affordable rate.

What to learn more about Debt Review, Read our article here.

Let us contact you! Start your journey towards debt-freedom today. Fill in the contact form now.


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