When it comes to debt management plans (DMPs), it is essential to understand the associated costs. Generally, the cost of participating in a DMP is minimal. After the counseling sessions, you will need to pay a one-time opening fee and a small monthly maintenance fee. It is important to be aware of any fees that may be charged by credit counseling organizations, such as an application fee, membership fee, upfront fee, or fee per creditor.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) prohibits these fees. GreenPath Financial Wellness and InCharge Debt Solutions are two nonprofit credit counseling agencies that offer DMP services in all 50 states and 16 states respectively. Money Management International (MMI) is another nonprofit entity that provides credit counseling and DMP services in all 50 states. When enrolling in a DMP with MMI, you can expect to pay off all enrolled debts within an average of 48 months and no more than 60 months.
There is no set amount of debt required to participate in a program; however, most creditors and legitimate credit counseling agencies suggest that your financial situation must be serious. If you enroll in your DMP, you should be able to fully repay your registered debts within three to five years. MMI is very transparent about its overall service and provides a comprehensive FAQ page that explains the process of its debt management program in detail. When enrolling in a DMP with MMI or any other credit counseling agency, you will need to provide an accounting of income and expenses so that they have an exact amount to make monthly payments.
This includes all eligible debts.