Déjà vu

In the past six years, I have answered more than 30,000 individual consumer questions asked to MMI’s Advice Team. Actually, it might be more accurate to say that I have answered the same 10 questions 3,000 times each.

I experienced déjà vu when I opened Advice Team emails this morning. Here are some of the questions people are asking today:

-I got a foreclosure notice—what happens now?
-What do I do with a truck I can’t pay for anymore?
-My husband’s salary has been cut, how can I pay our debts?
-How will bankruptcy affect my career?
-Am I liable for my wife’s credit card debt?
-How much of my paycheck can be garnished by a creditor?
-What is the best way to repair my credit?

While I find it very satisfying to help consumers in trouble, I can’t help but wish that they would have written much sooner with questions like “how can I save for emergencies?” or “what is the proper way to use credit?”

If you have a question (proactive or reactive!) for the Advice Team, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Kim McGrigg is the former Manager of Community and Media Relations for MMI.

  • The Consumer Federation of America (CFA) is an association of nonprofit consumer organizations that was established in 1968 to advance the consumer interest through research, advocacy, and education. Today, nearly 300 of these groups participate in the federation and govern it through their representatives on the organization's Board of Directors.
  • The National Council of Higher Education Resources (NCHER) is the nation’s oldest and largest higher education finance trade association. NCHER’s membership includes state, nonprofit, and for-profit higher education service organizations, including lenders, servicers, guaranty agencies, collection agencies, financial literacy providers, and schools, interested and involved in increasing college access and success. It assists its members in shaping policies governing federal and private student loan and state grant programs on behalf of students, parents, borrowers, and families.

  • Since 2007, the Homeownership Preservation Foundation (HPF) has served as a trusted, neutral source of information for more than eight million homeowners. They are partnered with, and endorsed by, numerous major government agencies, including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of the Treasury.

  • The mission of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD works to strengthen the housing market in order to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes; utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; and build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination.

  • The Council on Accreditation (COA) is an international, independent, nonprofit, human service accrediting organization. Their mission is to partner with human service organizations worldwide to improve service delivery outcomes by developing, applying, and promoting accreditation standards.

  • The National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®), founded in 1951, is the nation’s largest and longest-serving nonprofit financial counseling organization. The NFCC’s mission is to promote the national agenda for financially responsible behavior, and build capacity for its members to deliver the highest-quality financial education and counseling services.