Chapter 2. Negotiating Your Way Out of Debt

If you want peace, prepare for war.

—Flavius Vegetius Renatus, circa 375 a.d.

Creditors talk to you for only one reason: They want your money. They will stop at nothing until they are sure they won't get any money from you or until you stop them.

You are the only person who will look out for your interests. You may be able to solve all your issues through negotiations so we encourage you to give it a try. Through negotiations, you may be able to improve your financial condition.

There's a little-known secret in the credit industry: Creditors may accept a lesser payment than what they are owed, through negotiations. The trick is knowing when and how to offer it.

Learn from Donald Trump

Donald Trump negotiates; that's what he does. The Donald is a billionaire, real estate mogul extraordinaire, and host of the television show The Apprentice. Before he reached the height of the wealth and fame he now enjoys, Donald Trump had his share of financial problems.

During the 1980s, Donald Trump continually bought buildings, yachts, hotels, and casinos and even owned his own airline. The recession of the early 1990s, however, hit him very hard. At its worst, his companies reportedly carried debts of $11.4 billion. He was forced to place some of his casinos and other businesses in bankruptcy. And because he had personally guaranteed $1.3 billion of his companies' debt, Donald Trump was on the verge of his own personal bankruptcy. He once said this: "You ...

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