Dealing with Your Creditors

Go back to Chapter 2, “Your Debt Management Plan,” and the section titled “If You're Already Drowning.” If you haven't done so already, go through the exercises of identifying and prioritizing your bills, matching your resources with your debts, and figuring out a tentative game plan.

You'll want to do this work before you pick up the phone to talk to any of your creditors. Otherwise, you're at risk of being manipulated by the pushiest or most unpleasant lender. Knowing your priorities and resources is essential to crafting an effective debt crisis plan.

Also you need to be realistic about what debts you can pay and what debts you can't. If you're going to default on your credit cards or file bankruptcy, for example, ...

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