You haven’t paid your bills on time and your phone rings. This is usually the worst sound in the world. If you answer the phone, it means that you have to deal with the nasty debt collectors who want to haunt, tease, and even trick you into paying your debts even if it means being left with nothing to keep you going.
Some people may choose to ignore the call, but the problem is that an ignored call may turn into a series of nastier calls and some of these calls are placed to your close friends, neighbors, coworkers, and even relatives.
Therefore, it is always a good idea to pick up the call and know how you will handle the situation. However, you need to keep in mind that dealing with debt collectors means being careful and knowing what to say and what to avoid.
A minor slip could easily provide the debt collector with the much-needed leverage to pull a substantial amount of money out of your budget. Here are some of the things that you should never reveal to a debt collector.
Bank Account Information
One thing you need to keep in mind is that it isn’t the debt collector’s right to know your bank details such as your bank and bank account number even if you have a past-due debt.
Your bank details are part of your personal information that no other person or business should know. Giving out such information may also backfire on you since some debt collectors are crooks and they are willing to do anything to recover the debt.
Financial experts say that even if you agree to start making monthly payments or pay a lump sum, you should never do it via automated withdrawals from your savings or checking account.
Instead, pay with a cashier’s check or money order that will conceal your bank account details. If you have already made a mistake of providing the debt collector with your banking details, make sure that you start monitoring your account closely.
If the debt collector does anything suspicious, be prepared to dispute the withdrawal with your bank.
Some sweet-sounding debt collectors may ask you some questions about your monthly income and budget.
They may trick you into believing that such information will help them offer you advice on how you can adjust your budget to free up funds to go towards your bad credit loan and other debts payment. They may ask you questions such as:
- How much money do you take home every month?
- Do you get paid monthly, weekly, or bi-weekly?
- Does your partner work?
- Do you own a car?
- Do you own a home?
- Do you have any other sources of income?
- Do you have any other assets?
- Are your friends and relatives willing to lend you money?
These may sound like good questions, but they are the sorts of questions that a debt collecting agency should be asking you.
If you answer them, the debt collector will know everything about your financial life and some of the responses you provide can be used against you if the creditor decides to file a lawsuit against you.
Never Admit that the Debt Is Yours
Even if you are 100% sure that the debt is yours, do not admit it to a debt collector since you will lose the bargaining power.
Furthermore, it will get you into big trouble if you try to dispute the debt on your annual credit card report as inaccurate. In most cases, the old debts usually have fraudulent interest charges that you aren’t supposed to pay, but the debt collector will try to collect it anyway.
If you don’t want to spend a lot of time talking too much over the phone, simply request the debt collector to send everything to you in writing and hang up. You have the right to do so.