{This post is sponsored by Diamond Bloggers, the story and opinion is 100% my own.}

When James and I first got married in 1998, he was working as a manager at McDonald’s and I had just graduated from college with my accounting degree and I was looking for an accounting/finance job to use my newly acquired knowledge.

Our health insurance from McDonald’s wasn’t great.

Just before our one-month anniversary James needed to go to our local Emergency Room. I honestly can’t remember what the problem was (that was almost 20 years ago), but it wasn’t life-threatening and we ended up with a hospital bill that was over $2,000. 

We were newly married, neither of us was making very much money and we didn’t have enough savings to pay the bill.

I called the hospital and negotiated to pay them $50 per month until it was paid off.

After paying the bill for 6 months ($50 each month), they sent us a notice that they would accept a one-time partial (50%) payment to close out our bill (after paying the bill for 6 months, we still owed around $1,700).


Thankfully we had enough in our emergency fund to cover a one-time payment of $850, which was the full amount they were asking for.

About 90 days after we made that $850 payment, I looked at our credit report and it showed “paid by settlement” and it never adversely affected our credit.

In fact, within 6 months we bought our first home and we received the lowest interest rate available.

A few years and multiple children later, we had accumulated around $20,000 of credit card debt. At that time I reached out to a Christian Debt Counselor service in hopes that they would be able to negotiate our debt down just like I had done with the medical bill.

You see, this time, I had already called each credit card and they refused to negotiate with me. We had great credit and they wanted us to continue paying the minimum balances along with the 20% interest we were paying.

Unfortunately, the Christian Debt Counseling service we were using required a $36 monthly payment to negotiate on our behalf.

After almost a year in their program, they hadn’t helped us one bit. I felt like we had paid them over $300 for nothing.


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Our home was also in need of some important repairs so we got a second mortgage and used the funds to complete the repairs and pay off the credit cards.

In 2005 we sold that home, paid off the first and second mortgage and started over in a new home in a new county.

Unfortunately, we didn’t learn from our mistake and when the downturn in the economy came in 2009 we racked up the credit card debt again. As you may know from my couponing story, this time we were able to use coupons to dig us out of $15,000 of debt.

But not everyone has that kind of patience.

If you currently have any debt, then the Nationwide Debt Reduction Services could help alleviate your situation by negotiating your debt to pay a lower amount.

Here are four considerations to help you decide if using debt relief services is a good option for you:

1. No Monthly Fee

Unlike what we experienced by paying the Debt Counseling service $36 per month, you won’t have to pay a monthly fee while they are negotiating your accounts.

They will work with you to continue paying something towards your debt, but you won’t pay the negotiating company anything while they are negotiating.

2. You’ll Save Around 40% Off Your Balance

Typically you’ll only end up paying 60% of your current balances when the National Debt Reduction Services negotiate your unsecured debt.

That means they are typically able to negotiate to reduce your balances by 40%.

3. No Fee’s Until The Debt Is Paid Off

Once they’ve started negotiating on your behalf, they then figure out how much it will take to settle your debt.

The fee to pay them for their services is included in the final one-time settlement payment you make when your debt is paid off.

4. You Could Be Debt Free In 3 Years

The Nationwide Debt Reduction Services estimate that the time it will take to negotiate on your behalf and save up the required amount for a lump-sum payoff is typically 3 years.

Use this calculator to determine how long it will take you to pay off your current balances (the typical estimate is 8 years). Three years go really quickly when you have a solid plan and someone working on your behalf.

I know that having those looming credit card payments hanging over you can feel like an impossible challenge to conquer, using debt relief services is one option that can alleviate the stress and help you gain a solid plan to get out of debt quicker.


YOUR TURN: Are you ready to get out of debt? Have you tried negotiating them on your own before? Comment below with your experience.

Are Debt Reduction Services A Good Solution To Pay Off Debt?