Non-Profit Credit Counseling You Can Count On
CESI is a 501c3 non-profit credit counseling agency and a proud member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®). We’re based in Raleigh, North Carolina and have helped thousands of families nationwide since 1998 with our consumer counseling services online, by phone, and in person.
When struggling with credit card debt and looking for relief, it can be difficult to know where to turn and who to trust. A non-profit agency can provide you with the guidance you need. To begin, you’ll start with a free, no obligation debt analysis that can be done online or by phone where you’ll provide:
- Unsecured debts
- Income and assets
- Fixed spending
- Discretionary spending
In just a few minutes, we’ll provide a budget review, an estimated debt relief plan, and savings estimate based on your unique financial situation. A certified counselor will then review and confirm your information and propose a new budget and action plan.
You’ll be able to discuss the pros and cons of each option, ask any questions you may have, and decide on the next step with your certified counselor. If the recommendation is a Debt Management Plan (DMP), the counselor will explain your estimated pay off time and your new consolidated monthly payment. A DMP may be able to help you lower payments, reduce interest rates, eliminate fees, stop collection calls, and help you get out of debt faster than you would alone.
Choosing Debt Relief Services
There are a lot of options out there when looking for debt relief. Debt settlement, consolidation loans, debt management plans, and bankruptcy are all different options with advantages and disadvantages for each unique financial situation. Consumer Credit Counseling Services can help educate you on your options and help you determine the best course of action.
When choosing a service provider, you’ll want to consider the following:
- 501c3 non-profit
- Licensed in your state
- NFCC® member with certified counselors
- BBB A+ rating
- No obligation or fee for counseling
- Secure and confidential
- Free financial education and resources are provided
At CESI we believe in true financial solutions, not quick fixes. Getting and staying out of debt is a long term commitment. That’s why we provide the financial education and resources you need to enjoy a debt free life.
Our certified counselors are here for you on this journey and we’ll also provide you with an entire library of resources along the way including eBooks, videos, our Blog Digest for Debt Free Living, our DMP Facebook Community, and more.
8 Signs a Credit Counseling Service Can Help
Did you know that the average U.S. household carries $15,310 in credit card debt? You’re not alone in your search for debt relief. If you can relate to any of the debt warning signs listed below, we encourage you to call (866) 484-5373 for personalized counseling with a certified counselor or start online with a free debt analysis.
- Approaching or over your credit card limit(s)
- Using credit to pay for everyday expenses
- High Debt-to-Income ratio
- Taking Cash Advances or loans to pay bills
- Making minimum payments
- Juggling bills to keep up with payments
- Multiple balance transfers
- Not knowing how much you owe
Still have questions? Please check out our Frequently Asked Questions.
How It Can Help
In April 2016, the NFCC released a comprehensive study conducted by researchers at Ohio State University on the impact of financial counseling. Their key findings included the following:
Primary reasons people sought financial counseling:
- 63% listed reduced income
- 23% listed increased expenses
- 31% listed other (including “bad credit” among others)
Prior to seeking counseling:
- One-third of people surveyed had a budget and only 60% follow it
- 56% regularly use more than one credit card and 21% regularly use five or more
- 41% pay the minimum amount due and 30% pay less than the minimum
- 73% pay their debt more consistently
- 70% have improved their overall financial goals
- 67% are now better at managing their money
- $17,000 average decrease in debt
- 50-point average increase in their credit score
CESI is also approved by the Executive Office of U.S. Trustees (EOUST) to offer Pre-Bankruptcy Credit Counseling. Before filing for a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you are required to complete a session online or by phone.
The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention Act of 2005 (BAPCPA) introduced several new provisions including the requirement to complete Credit Counseling 180 days before filing for bankruptcy. In fact, you must also complete a Debtor Education course after filing in order for your debts discharged. Failure to complete these requirements will result in a case being dismissed.
Upon completion, you’ll receive a certificate that you or your bankruptcy attorney will include with the other documentation to file your bankruptcy case.