The debt collection process can be a very frustrating and humbling experience. You can make it far less stressful by attempting to work with debt collectors as best as you can. On the other hand, you can make the process much more difficult if you make the following mistakes.
Not Answering the Phone: One of the biggest mistakes that people often make when dealing with debt collectors is avoiding them. Many people screen their phone calls or simply don’t pick up the phone when it rings because they are afraid that it might be a debt collector. This may temporarily relieve them of having to face the debt collectors. However, they can’t be avoided forever. They will just keep calling, first at home and then at work and then finally, family and friends.
Individuals will eventually be forced to speak to the debt collectors. They will bug them to death until they are able to do so. It’s best to suck it up and face the debt collectors since ignoring them won’t stop the phone calls.
Not being honest: Debt collectors will attempt to force individuals into some type of payment plan. Being honest about what one can and can not afford is the best possible way to deal with creditors. It doesn’t do anyone any good if you promise to make payments every month and then can’t afford to do so. Don’t tell them what they want to hear. Be honest and try to come up with a repayment plan that will meet your budget.
Letting them run over you: A lot of debt collection involves bullying and veiled threats. Every time a debt collector calls, they will want you to commit to making a payment that day. If you can’t afford to, then don’t do it. It will only create more problems by destroying your budget.
Also, remember that you have rights. Debt collectors can’t continue to call you at work if you let them know that your boss doesn’t allow debt collection calls. They also can only call you between regulated hours. They have to follow the law or risk being sued. Don’t let them run all over you or your life will quickly become a nightmare.
Not getting outside help when you need it: Another debt mistake that many people make is not getting outside help when they need it. Instead, they often wait until it is too late. Don’t make this mistake. As soon as you sense trouble and are unable to work it out yourself, call in the professionals. A financial counselor or debt consolidation company will be able to provide you with good advice.
Cursing or insulting them: Even though you may be frustrated and get tired of all of the calls, do your best to be polite. It won’t help the situation at all if you spout insults or curses. Instead, you will only bring out the worse in the collector, which makes things worst for you. Remember the adage that “You catch more flies with honey then vinegar.”