Understand The risks of medical debt consolidation before you go ahead
Surf through the internet and you will get a wide list of opinions, reviews, analyses, statements, and recommendations of different people on how you should deal with medical debts that you are finding difficult to handle with your given financial situation.
However, just like the banks and different financial institutions, they will not tell you anything about the risks involved in the different processes that you may follow. They will highlight the advantages with a hint of promotion so that they can endorse the specific relief or debt management program.
If you are one of those millions of Americans struggling with your multiple consumer and medical debts, you will certainly look for ways and be ready to do almost anything to get these paid off quickly. Eventually, in this haste and desperation, you will end up choosing the wrong path and make the situation even worse because any decisions taken in haste are often wrong.
Feeling helpless about these multiple debts that you owe, you will try out different ways such as:
- Work long hours to earn more and pay off your debt quickly
- Take on a second job in your free hours
- Sell your possessions in a yard sale
- Consider settling our debts for a reduced amount even if it hurts your credit score and
- Consider consolidating your debts to reduce the rate of interest and number of loans to one so that it does not harm your credit.
While each of these will have its significant pros and cons, balancing them all shows that consolidating your multiple loans may seem to be the best option when debts keep on weighing you down.
The reasons for the popularity
If you go through the reviews or look for all available options to deal with your debts on different websites such as nationaldebtreliefprograms.com you will see that one of the most popular choices of the debtors is the debt consolidation option. There are several reasons for debt consolidation to be so popular such as:
- Debt consolidation helps them to convert all their multiple loans into one
- Allow them to transfer one loan with a specific lender to another one
- Strike a better and more favorable deal regarding the loan terms and
- Get a loan at a relatively low rate of interest.
All these facts take away a major chunk of their worries as they now have to make lower monthly payments, keep track of one loan and creditor eliminating the chances of missing any payment and help them to pay their debts off faster enabling them to save money at the same time.
Other reasons why consumers find consolidating their multiple debts more favorable when they have multiple loan payments and are struggling to juggle with it are that it helps them to simplify their finances and ensures that their credit is not harmed.
The risks involved
However, there is no reason to believe that consolidating your debt is entirely free from any risks. This is due to the uncertainties of time within which you will need to repay the fresh loan that you take on. Financial conditions may change and further medical emergencies may come up and therefore worsen the situations putting you back to square one once again.
Indeed, this is a useful and effective strategy but has many different potential repercussions and it is not the least that it may impact your credit score negatively and jeopardize your financial future in general if you fail to repay it on time. Many consumers do not seem to understand these risks inherent in debt consolidation and sign up for it thinking that it will change their lives and financial health without realizing what they are actually entering into.
Indeed, you cannot eliminate the risk factors of debt consolidation but you can surely minimize it and may even prevent these from occurring being prudent enough to follow the tips of the experts.
- Firstly, the experts suggest that after you receive the bill for the covered procedures you must contact the medical provider to confirm these and dispute any errors in the bills. Remember, there is a fair chance of this to happen due to the deliberate and common practice of the medical services. It is also very wise to discuss the charges for the treatment with the medical providers before you undergo the treatment. Though this is probably not possible during an emergency, it will help you to know what you can expect after the elective procedure.
- Secondly, after you know what the provider will charge you for the treatment you must now confirm how much your insurance company will pay. After you receive the bill from the medical service provider get in touch with the insurance company just to make sure that all the tests and treatments are a part of their policy and the company is administering these in the right way while considering your claim.
- However, these prudent steps may not always prevent a medical bill that you cannot afford. If you are in such a situation, the next prudent step is to visit your doctor or medical provider and talk to them to negotiate for a lowered amount. Make sure that you do it right away because a delay will signify your acceptance and if you do not pay your bill the hospital may send it to the collections as well. Once they do it, it is far less likely that the debt collection agency will want to negotiate with you for a reduced payment or alternative repayment plan. Therefore, make sure that you reach the original provider and not the collection agency.
You must be informed at this point that medical bills have shelf lives. This means that if your medical debt is more than seven years old, it will fall under the statute of limitation. This will then no longer have any effect on your credit report. It is for this reason you should focus on the most recent bills as these will stay on your credit report for a long time.