Money

Choosing a Credit Counsellor

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afe57cf3e04e654325b57c55f6c717bf
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5 minutes - Article

There are people who can help you come up with a plan for paying money back. Some of them help for free.

If you owe a little or a lot of money, you can call a credit counsellor to talk about your options for paying back what you owe.

These counsellors can even help you save cash!

Make a plan

Manraj Waraich works at the Credit Counselling Society and she teaches people how to be smart with money. You can call her and she will help you for free. Manraj and other people in her line of work will help you make a plan for managing your money so you’re not broke all the time and so you can avoid owing a bunch of money to other people.

Credit counsellors help you out with a budget. They look at your income, costs, how much you owe and can even call up people for you to help lower your debts.

“A credit counsellor can help you manage it on your own”, says Manraj, “and that means help with understanding a budget, how to create a budget, tracking our expenses, understanding what debts we have and how we can manage them.”

Save money? Really?

If you owe more money than you can pay back right away, then you might be able to get what is called a debt management program. This ‘program’ is basically a plan for helping you lower your debts and save money.

A credit counsellor can help you deal with businesses you may owe money to, like cell phone companies, stores or banks.

“It might mean us going back to a financial institution, explaining the situation to them, and then seeing what options they can offer us. With certain debts, based off of the relationships we have with their head office, those debts can be at a lower interest rate, either completely eliminated or reduced drastically."

It's ok to make mistakes

So we all make mistakes with money. If you can’t pay your bills, go talk to someone to find help. You always have options. The trick is to learn from your mistakes.

You’re young and the sooner you learn to be good with money, the better off you will be. So go talk to a credit counsellor and make a plan for managing your money.

“Who’s born with amazing money management skills?" says Manraj, "Nobody! It’s not like we magically turn 18 and all of a sudden we are able to know all of these skills. We learn through trial and error, and to be able to actually admit that there's something wrong and that we are trying to fix it takes a lot of courage.”

Remember that not all credit counsellors are equal, so check out their google reviews before choosing someone.

(photo credit: unsplash.com)

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