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April 2017 Archives

Medical bills common reason for bankruptcy

People file bankruptcy for many different reasons, and it often has nothing to do with their money management skills, or even their spending habits. In 2013, NerdWallet found that it was medical bills that put the biggest strain on Americans’ finances. Health care was the number one reason people filed for bankruptcy. 

Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy -- which debts will remain?

Florida consumers who are facing overwhelming debt may be researching potential remedies for their dilemmas. When considering bankruptcy, one of the common questions relates to which debts cannot be discharged. Although there are specific requirements to determine whether a person qualifies for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the way debts are treated differ considerably between the two options.

What avalanches, snowballs and credit card debt have in common

Many Florida residents might think of skiing the Alps or scaling the top of Mount Everest when they hear words like snowballs and avalanches in the same sentence. Not many, however, would conjure up images of credit card debt. Yet, these things are connected in the financial world.

Home foreclosure rates down in Southwest Florida

The mortgage crisis in 2007 forced many homeowners in Florida and throughout the nation to find ways to keep their homes. Home foreclosure activity continued to rise in the state, according to a property and real estate data provider. However, there is a positive trend occurring in the industry, particularly in Southwest Florida.

Tips to reduce credit card debt

Many Florida residents and others across the nation have concerns about theirs finances. A personal finance columnist routinely addresses questions from consumers regarding all aspects of money issues. For example, a recent topic addressed whether it was more beneficial to maintain an emergency fund in a savings account or to pay off credit card debt.

Couple faces home foreclosure due to bank mistakes

Homeowners in Florida and around the country work each month to pay their mortgages and remain in their homes. In difficult financial situations, some may seek loan modifications to reduce the amount of monthly mortgage payments. Others may choose to file for bankruptcy in order to keep their home but start with a clean slate to rebuild financial stability. Recently, a consumer affairs columnist highlighted the woes of a couple in another state that believed they had taken the necessary steps to keep their house but now face home foreclosure.

Couple seeking loan modification faced foreclosure

Many Florida residents and others across the country experienced financial difficulty in the recent mortgage crisis. In efforts to avoid foreclosure, some homeowners started the loan modification process. Working with financial institutions to lower monthly mortgage payments enabled some to stay in their homes. Despite following instructions from their bank, one couple's efforts to get their loan modified resulted in unexpected foreclosure proceedings.

Tips to manage credit card debt

Credit cards are a convenient method of payment for Florida residents. Many consumers are often able to pay their entire balance each month and incur no or very little interest expense. However, some households struggle to manage credit card debt. Reports show that the average amount of debt is about $5,700. However, for those people who do not pay balances off each month, the level of credit card debt is over $16,000.

Should you use up savings before filing for bankruptcy?

Filing for bankruptcy is not as simple as submitting a document, walking away from debts and starting over financially. Every move you make can affect how the court determines your bankruptcy case. Therefore, you need to ensure you take the right steps not only after you file but also before. One action you may be considering is using up all the money in your savings account either to pay off as much debt as possible before declaring bankruptcy or to protect it from creditors. Either way, you need to be aware of the following information before you deplete your savings.

When to file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Some Florida residents may find themselves struggling financially. Many may miss mortgage payments or are chronically late in submitting the payment. Consumers might pay only the minimum amount due on credit cards each month or start using the cards more frequently for day-to-day expenses. When financial concerns continue to mount, someone may consider filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy to alleviate the financial stress.

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