When you think of secured loan debt, you probably think of mortgage debt and automobile loans. But, secured loans come in many shapes and sizes. They may be secured with significant assets, such as your car or a piece of expensive jewelry. Or, they may be offered by a storefront finance company and secured by your Xbox and television set. The one thing they have in common is that in your loan agreement, you have given the lender the right to take certain property if you don’t pay.
As lenders hope when they offer secured personal loans, this security interest often creates a disproportionate fear of falling behind on the loan.
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The Truth about Secured Personal Loans
Nobody wants to lose property. But, often that’s more of an emotional decision than a practical one. Just as people often struggle to keep car loans current even though the car isn’t worth the money, other secured loans are often “underwater.” That means the property that serves as security for the loan is worth less than the borrower is being asked to pay back—sometimes quite a lot less. Too many people lose sight of this and end up paying back hundreds of dollars in loan debt plus interest and late fees to avoid losing a second-to-last generation game system that could be replaced for $150 on eBay.
There is a better way.
Managing Secured Personal Loan Debt
When the lender has a lien on your property, it’s easy to believe that your only options are to pay in full, on time, or to lose your property. In fact, the lender’s analysis isn’t all that much different in a secured personal loan case than in an unsecured one. Sure, the asset that serves as security is one factor, but often that property isn’t worth repossessing. In some cases, the cost of repossession and resale will eat up too much of the value of the asset. In other cases, it may be difficult for a lender to repossess. For example, it’s hard to imagine how a lender could self-help repossess a diamond necklace without your cooperation.
The best approach to fighting collection action on secured personal loan debt depends on the amount of the loan, the value of the property, and whether the property has non-economic value that’s important to you. You may be able to avoid repossession, to negotiate a full settlement of the debt for a fraction of what you owe, or even to pay nothing.
Depending on how a debt collector or debt buyer has handled the process, you may even be able to pursue damages if your rights have been violated. This may include a write-off of the outstanding debt as part of the settlement of your claim.
DebtCleanse™ Can HelpWe’ll give you the strategies and resources you need to put debt collector stress behind you.
When you sign up with DebtCleanse™, we’ll team you up with an attorney in your state. Your attorney will notify collectors to direct any future communication to their law offices. This should immediately stop harassing calls and letters.
Your attorney will also interview you and comb through your documents for potential violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) or other federal and state laws. Those violations can create leverage to challenge your secured personal loan debt and other types of debt. If creditors and debt collectors don’t follow the law, your attorney can hold them accountable.
Often, debt collectors stop collection action as soon as they receive a letter from an attorney, focusing their efforts on people who are less likely to fight back. And, many consumer protection statutes require debt collectors who break the law to pay your attorney’s fees. So, our members may be able to resolve debts without paying anything beyond the enrollment and membership fees.
DebtCleanse™ can put you back in control with creditors and debt collectors.