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As we’ve been contemplating this move for a while and are now forced to do something thanks to a major repair to our commuter car, we’d previously contacted both Freedom and Takechargeamerica for information before I found your site. In fact, I was preparing to call them when I found your site. They seem reputable, and the press clips I found seemed okay. Is there a problem with these companies (this stuff is very confusing!).

Glad I can help you choose a debt solution. Freedom is a company I have never worked with but apparently is very large. I have never heard of TakeChargeAmerica before but according to their site, they are a non-profit credit counseling agency which means they will likely put you into a debt management plan whereas Freedom is a debt settlement company.

In general, a debt management plan will take 5-7 years to be debt free while a debt settlement plan will take 18-36 months (depending on your situation/income). Debt management plans are provided by non-profit companies who are often funded by credit card companies. They coordinate a payment plan with lower expenses, rates, etc.

Debt settlement is when the company will actually negotiate with your credit card companies to lower the total amount you owe sometimes by up to 60%. So if you owe $30K, they may try to get it down to between $12K-$20K. This option is more drastic allowing you to get out of debt much quicker but also it damages your credit more. That’s the tradeoff.

Read more information on my site, I answer a lot of questions you may have there then decide if debt management or debt settlement sounds the best to you before choosing a debt solution company.