Along with the reputable companies serving this industry, companies that prey upon the current economic crisis are taking advantage of the emotional distress those in debt feel. Our goal is to ensure that consumers have all the available information and can make decisions based on their needs, not predatory practices.
San Mateo, CALIF. (PRWEB) May 15, 2009
Indicating that the current consumer credit crisis is far from over, the amount of debt Freedom Debt Relief has settled for clients rose to more than $87 million for the period of Jan. 1-April 30, 2009, which is more than double the debt settled for the same period in 2008, and which represents an annual run rate of more than a quarter of a billion dollars.
During the first four months of this year, Freedom Debt Relief settled 15,010 creditor accounts for its clients - an increase of more than 50 percent over the same period in 2008. The average settlement FDR has achieved for its clients this year is approximately 42 percent, nearly a 5 percent improvement over the same period in 2008. That translates to average savings of 58 percent of total debt balances at the time of settlement (before program fees).
Debt settlement firms, such as Freedom Debt Relief, negotiate on the consumer's behalf with creditors, and offer an alternative to credit counseling, debt consolidation and bankruptcy. The firms negotiate with creditors, and typically can reduce a consumer's principal balance due -- rather than just interest rates -- with a settlement term of two or three years. Debt settlement, explained Andrew Housser, co-CEO of Freedom Debt Relief, is best suited for individuals with serious debt hardship who are struggling to make required minimum payments and who would otherwise be considering bankruptcy or credit counseling.
"More people are turning to structured debt relief programs as the economy repositions to weather the current storm," said Housser. "At the same time, as we are seeing through continually increasing traffic to our financial portal, Bills.com, consumers are looking to make the most of their money. More people are seeking tips and information about credit cards, credit scores and debt relief to help set their course."
Recently, Freedom Debt Relief has led industry efforts to propose legislation to regulate the debt settlement sector, working with several state legislatures to protect consumers' rights. "We continue to see a problem with transparency in the debt settlement industry, and we want to help change this," said Housser. "Along with the reputable companies serving this industry, companies that prey upon the current economic crisis are taking advantage of the emotional distress those in debt feel. Our goal is to ensure that consumers have all the available information and can make decisions based on their needs, not predatory practices."
About Freedom Financial Network
Freedom Financial Network, LLC, provides consumer debt settlement services through its Freedom Debt Relief and Freedom Tax Relief subsidiaries, served through its free consumer finance portal, Bills.com. Working for the consumer to negotiate with creditors and lower principal balances due, the company has served more than 50,000 clients since 2002.
Based in San Mateo, Calif., Freedom Financial Network also operates offices in Sacramento and Tempe, Ariz. The company, with more than 500 employees, was voted one of the best places to work in both the San Francisco Bay Area and the Phoenix area in 2008. Company co-founders and co-CEOs Andrew Housser and Brad Stroh were named to the Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal's "40 Under 40" list in 2008, and are recipients of the Northern California Ernst & Young 2008 Entrepreneur of the Year Award.