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How to Get Free Credit Counseling in New Jersey

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In a Nutshell

Here is how you can get debt relief by getting free credit counseling in New Jersey. 

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated December 4, 2019

Easy access to credit cards, low financial literacy, and a snowballing student debt crisis are putting people in over their heads with seemingly no end in sight. Let New Jersey credit counseling services relieve the stress and burden of owing more than you can afford. Consumer credit counseling in New Jersey is a service usually offered by nonprofit organizations or companies that offer guidance on various financial matters, like student loans. Whether it is excess debt, lack of financial knowledge or budgeting problems, a New Jersey credit counselor can partner with you to find the best solutions to your specific money problems.

For people who are finding it hard to pay their debts and make ends meet, credit counseling in New Jersey can provide guidance, information, and solutions. Consumer credit counseling sessions in New Jersey are confidential, and certified credit counselors are non-judgmental. So, no matter how little you understand the process or how deeply you are in debt, you will get advice and guidance you need with no shame.

New Jersey credit counseling agency services often include:

  • Education on money management 

  • Budget counseling and preparation

  • Debt counseling

  • Housing counseling and referrals.

Before allowing your outstanding credit card bills to go into collections or defaulting on your student loans, let a New Jersey credit counselor come up with a repayment plan to reduce your debt. New Jersey credit counselors are helpful as they will negotiate concessions from your creditors to eliminate or reduce interest charges and stop both late and over-limit fees. Credit counseling in New Jersey also takes the fear out of communicating with your creditors. One of the best parts is that credit counselors can negotiate a repayment plan directly with your creditors.

Student loans are often difficult to repay. Credit counselors in New Jersey can help you evaluate and understand your repayment and various assistance options so that you can decide which kind of debt relief option is most suitable for you. New Jersey credit counselors also help people with mortgage debt and can guide and advise renters, individuals interested in purchasing a new home, as well as seniors who would like to take advantage of options, like reverse mortgages. 

Fortunately, many New Jersey counseling organizations provide credit counseling at no or low cost. They specialize in assessing your financial situation and financial counseling, presenting you with a thorough analysis of your economic position. New Jersey credit counseling is right for you if:

  • your spending is out of hand

  • your accounts are in default

  • you are considering bankruptcy

How to Get Free Credit Counseling in New Jersey

Here is how you can get debt relief by getting free credit counseling in New Jersey.

Find New Jersey Nonprofit Credit Counseling Agencies

In most cases, reliable New Jersey credit counseling agencies are nonprofit organizations. They give you valuable insight into how you can manage your debts and money and typically provide educational materials free of charge. Nonprofit credit counseling agencies in New Jersey get funding from voluntary contributions, mainly from creditors. 

Note that this allows these nonprofit agencies to render services to anyone, irrespective of income level, at a considerably lower cost. For the best results, you should look for a New Jersey credit counseling agency that is a member in excellent standing with a national association of credit counselors, such as the NFCC or approved by the U.S. Department of Justice. Although nonprofit credit counseling organizations in New Jersey do charge fees, the amount is minimal, and for people in severe financial hardship, fees can be and are waived. 

Information to Research Before Talking to a New Jersey Credit Counseling Agency

You should look for some searchable signs that will help you find a competent and reputable New Jersey credit counselor. Once you have a list of potential candidates, you should vet each one of them with your state’s Attorney General and your local consumer protection agency, as well.

Student loan debt is one of the growing concerns in the country. If you have excess student loans, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling is an excellent starting point to find New Jersey credit counselors certified and well versed in providing counseling on student loans. You might also want to look into positive reviews or complaints to the Better Business Bureau for consumer feedback on specific New Jersey counseling agencies. 

Questions to Ask the New Jersey Credit Counselor Before Signing Up

Start your search for a New Jersey credit counseling agency by asking some of these questions.

How often will we meet or work together? Note that some people have ongoing relationships and interactions with their New Jersey credit counselors. In contrast, others tend to meet with their credit counselors just once or twice. Ask your New Jersey credit counseling agency how the two of you will work together in both the short and long term in order to help you attain all your goals.

For how long has your New Jersey credit counseling agency been providing these services? Note that the experience that a New Jersey credit counselor has with managing various consumer debts, like student loans and credit card debt, is very important as this often translates to the experience and expertise of their credit counselors. 

What to Expect During Credit Counseling

You should collect the following information to make the most of your credit counseling session in New Jersey:

  • A list of all your expenses, like food, gas, utilities, clothing, and other miscellaneous expenses

  • Any correspondence you have had with the I.R.S. or other collection agencies

  • A list of all your income sources

  • Your latest credit card statements

As each situation is unique, the need for one-on-one communication and individualized attention is crucial to receiving sound financial advice and solutions that are tailored to your specific needs. Your New Jersey credit counselor will provide critical recommendations, and you will receive an extensive and objective evaluation of your situation after the session.

What Happens After Credit Counseling in New Jersey

A nonprofit credit counselor in New Jersey will only recommend the best solutions for your financial situation. Some of them are as follows: 

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New Jersey Debt Consolidation

Debt consolidation is one way to lower the total amount you owe. By negotiating with all your creditors, your New Jersey credit counseling agency will seek lower interest rates so that your monthly payments are more affordable.

Debt consolidation in New Jersey is ideal for people who are not able to repay credit card debts, payday loans, personal loans, private student loans, and medical bills due to costly financial mistakes. A debt consolidation loan may take a lot of the anxiety and stress out of your financial life by lowering multiple monthly payments to only one payment to a single source. When comparing your various options, make sure that you factor in costs, like balance transfer fees, early payoff penalties, and annual fees. 

New Jersey Debt Management Plan

Debt management plans are programs where your counselor may be able to provide you with lower monthly payments, lower or waive interest rates and late fees, and stop collection calls to make things manageable for you. A DMP is one of the potential outcomes of free credit counseling in New Jersey but is often done at an additional service fee or charge. It is important to keep in mind that a DMP is not a loan, nor is it the same as debt settlement; this is because you’re still repaying your individual creditors in full but through a New Jersey credit counseling agency.

New Jersey Bankruptcy

In addition to these two options, you can also file for New Jersey bankruptcy. By filing bankruptcy in New Jersey, you can get debt relief and receive a fresh start. Bankruptcy counseling in New Jersey is one of the quickest and most effective ways to eliminate your loans and credit card debt and get closer to your financial goals. 

Written By:

The Upsolve Team

Upsolve is fortunate to have a remarkable team of bankruptcy attorneys, as well as finance and consumer rights professionals, as contributing writers to help us keep our content up to date, informative, and helpful to everyone.

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