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ClearOne Advantage voted by SmartCEO 100 Best-Run Companies 2012

December 4th, 2012

The SmartCEO100 program honors Mid-Atlantic companies that are leaders within their industries and have experienced consistent growth. It is an exclusive community of the most proactive, profitable CEOs in the region. These are CEOs of exceptional character, and part of their growth and leadership philosophy is sharing their vision in a community of like-minded peers. smart-ceo-100-best-run-companies.png

AFCC Fall Conference 2012 - Chicago

October 2nd, 2012

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We are excited for the AFCC Fall Conference being held in Chicago this year.  Please come join our Board Members: Tomas Gordon CEO of ClearOne Advantage and Brian Tawney General Counsel as we discuss “The New World of Debt Settlement”.

For more information please go to the AFCC website here

ClearOne Advantage is an Accredited Member of the AFCC . ClearOne has demonstrated the required business practices and standards required by the AFCC..

[View other articles on ClearOne’s BlogOne click here]

ClearOne Advantage’s Nine Secrets to Successfully Settling Your Debt

September 21st, 2012

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According to the latest statistics released by the Federal Reserve Bureau, the total amount of consumer debt in the United States stands at approximately $2.5 trillion.

The idea overcoming your debt, particularly in times of financial hardship, may seem like a daunting, hopeless task. However, there are several secrets that you should be privy to that will aid in resolving debt and restoring your peace of mind.

 

ClearOne Advantage’s Nine Secrets to Successfully Settling Your Debt

 1.  DIY Debt Settlement

There are many debts that can oftentimes be settled by the consumer.  If you have confidence in your negotiation skills and understand how the settlement process works, you may want to try to negotiate with creditors without the aid of a settlement company. You could also begin saving and setting aside your own settlement funds to pay the settlements, just as we’d have you do. So why hire us? It’s really no different than hiring a plumber or an electrician. You could certainly give it a try yourself (with unpredictable results), but hiring a professional might save time and money while giving you satisfaction that the job has been done right.

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There are several reasons why our clients decide to use ClearOne Advantage instead of negotiating settlements on their own:

Negotiations can be stressful. Using a debt settlement company can eliminate much of the stress and hassle that comes with directly contacting creditors and collection agencies. A debt collector’s job is to have you pay as much of the balance as possible. We have professional negotiators that do nothing but negotiate settlements for our clients every single day.

Well informed industry professionals serving you. Our staff has a knowledge base that includes determining the approximate amounts creditors and collectors will settle debts for at a given period of delinquency. Our wealth of industry expertise, obtained though years of successfully settling client debts, is used to create each client’s tailored program projections.  In addition, we are often able to settle large blocks of debt in bulk, thus employing economies of scale to obtain settlements for our clients.

Support System for clients’ long term financial success. ClearOne Advantage is committed to our clients’ success. Many consumers settling on their own debt may overlook the importance of a solid, motivating support system in successfully completing debt resolution and obtaining financial stability. Just like a personal trainer works individually to motivate and help their clients succeed, our customer service and negotiations teams are committed to doing everything possible to motivate and support our clients through our program. However, if you take on the task of settling your own debts, make sure to have a solid support system in place. Seeking out people in your life that you can bounce ideas off of and discuss settlement strategy with can be important assets to the success of any do-it-yourself debt settlement program!

 

2. Be an informed Consumer

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If you are planning on hiring a company to settle your debts, you need to be an informed consumer.  Unfortunately, the marketplace has some companies claiming quick results and offering settlements for pennies on the dollar. In addition, with recent law changes that have gone into effect, some debt settlement companies are more focused in using loopholes to the law rather than focusing on what’s best for their clients.  When selecting the best debt relief option for you, it is important to do some research and ask some questions.

For example, make sure any settlement company you are considering is not charging you any up-front fees.   Some will claim to be attorney-driven models as a way to force you to pay a fee up front.  Don’t fall for the hype; only work with a debt settlement company that complies with both the letter and the spirit of the FTC Rule, which regulates how debt settlement companies may charge their fees.   Good, reputable companies will only charge you a fee after they’ve successfully settled a debt.

In addition, make sure the debt settlement company you are considering is a member of the American Fair Credit Council.  As indicated on the American Fair Credit Council’s website:

The American Fair Credit Council is the leading association of professional Consumer Credit Advocates organized around a few very simple yet very powerful principles: 

To support consumers dealing with overwhelming credit and debt problems;

To promote and enforce industry “best practices”; and

To advocate for consumer-centric legislation at the state and federal level that protects consumers through strong regulation and preservation of choice of debt relief options.

AFCC-certified Consumer Credit Advocates work on behalf of consumers by standing up to their creditors, thereby helping them get back on the road to financial independence.  They do this by negotiating directly with creditors to secure a resolution that reduces the amount owed to a level the consumer can manage.  In return for their services, AFCC-certified Consumer Credit Advocates are paid a fee by the consumer (never by the creditor) but ONLY WHEN THE DEBT IS RESOLVED.

To avoid any hint of impropriety, AFCC members do not handle, manage, or otherwise control their clients’ funds.  All AFCC members agreed to abide by our Code of Conduct, which is the strictest in the industry.

ClearOne Advantage is not only an Accredited Member of the AFCC- two of our executives were elected by the industry to sit on the AFCC’s Executive Board.

 

3. Settling for Less to Benefit You

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Contrary to what you may be led to believe, most creditors are willing to settle your unsecured debts, including credit cards, medical bills deficiency balances and personal loans. The amount that they will settle for varies on the debt’s delinquency level, the creditor and your financial situation. 

For example, there may be certain windows-in-time during pre account charge-off where a particular creditor may settle for less. In addition, some settlements are best post- charge-off. This can be a complicated process, but by remaining diligent, doing your research, and employing successful negotiation tactics, you can generally settle your debt for less than you owe in consideration for a legitimate financial hardship.  After all, if your creditors force you into bankruptcy, they risk receiving nothing at all.

The key in resolving a debt for a lesser amount lies in the negotiation process, which is where ClearOne Advantage comes in.

Our team of trained negotiators will approach each of your creditors, with the goal of negotiating the best settlements of your enrolled accounts for less than the full outstanding balance owed. Due to our size, relationships within the industry and knowledge of the creditors’ own processes, we are in a prime position to negotiate on your behalf.

 

4. Negotiations can begin in as early as 30 days

While each case varies, debt settlement negotiations can begin as early as 30 days after the debt becomes delinquent. It will depend on a number of factors, including the creditor, how behind in payments you are and your financial goals. The two most important aspects to your settlement timing, aside from your creditors’ policies, will be the money you have available for the settlement and the hardship you are experiencing.

 

5.   The Nuclear Option: Bankruptcy

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Many debt settlement clients are seeking to pay back as much of their debt as they can afford, without resorting to filing bankruptcy. While it may seem counterproductive for a creditor to settle for anything less that the full amount of an unsecured debt, they are keenly aware that a consumer may have the option to declare bankruptcy if their financial hardship becomes insurmountable. Declaring bankruptcy could result in the creditor not recovering any of the debt owed from the consumer. Hence, debt settlement often serves as a viable alternative for creditors to recover a significant portion of the original debt.

 

6.    Negotiating Multiple Installments to Creditors can lessen the Burden

Large, single payments demanded by creditors to settle a debt can seem off-putting and discouraging to you. Fortunately, it is often possible to negotiate smaller, incremental payment plans to lessen the burden to consumers who simply can’t pay a high lump-sum settlement payment. Creditors are usually willing to settle in multiple installments as opposed to demanding the entire settlement amount in an up-front, lump sum. It’s a matter of dollars and good sense: Something is better than nothing at all.

 

7.     Your Credit Score May Not be as Important As Getting Out of Debt

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Remember, your credit score is good for one primary thing: to get more debt.  The goal of debt settlement is to get you out of debt. Many of our clients have made the conscious decision that “enough is enough”. They understand that resolving their debt takes precedence over maintaining their credit score. Once you graduate from the program, you can begin rebuilding your credit score.

If you need to maintain a good credit score for purposes of security clearance or otherwise, speak with your supervisor.  Often times our clients’ supervisors are willing to allow them to resolve their debts with the aid of a debt settlement program, even though their credit score may decrease.  After all, most people consider it more important to be free of overburdening debt than maintaining the ability to accumulate the debt to begin with.

However, if you absolutely must make a large purchase in the very near future (e.g. a car to get to and from work) or need to maintain a good credit score for employment or otherwise, a decrease to your credit score may be more harmful.   But, you should first take a look at your credit score presently to see if it already is damaged.

 

8.   Buyer Beware: Once Your Debt is Resolved, Credit Card Companies Will Want You Back

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Winning the battle against your debt is only the beginning. In order to stay debt-free, you will have to become disciplined and not fall back into old habits. You may be surprised to find that after resolving your debt, credit card companies are often times more than eager to offer you new lines of credit. The lure of a new line of credit may seem like an enticing proposition, but it is critical for you to remember that signing up for a new credit card may begin the cycle all over again. Try to keep the number of credit cards you have down to a minimum, use them only in cases of true emergency and commit yourself to paying more than the minimum every month.

 

9. The Ultimate Secret: Get Out and Stay Out of Debt

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Debt settlement is only beginning of the journey to achieving financial stability. At ClearOne Advantage, we strive to work with our clients to develop a solid, realistic debt resolution plan. However, our ultimate goal is to give each client the proper tools and education to make sound financial decisions in the future and remain debt-free long after their settlement program is complete.

Here are a few rules to guide you in establishing good financial habits and keeping your manageable.

Spend less. At the most basic level, staying out of debt can be seen as simply spending less. Of course, this is easier said than done. Create a realistic household budget and stick to it.

Pay cash. Debit cards are handy but can make you spend more than you can afford. Know what you can spend. Pay cash if you can. If you don’t have the money, then you probably don’t need it.

Ignore credit card offers. Credit card offers seem to be in never ending abundance in your mail box. Fight the urge for “easy” funds and use credit cards only for emergencies.

Be realistic. We live in a consumer society that makes everything attractive. Ignore the siren calls. If you don’t need it, don’t buy it. If you can’t avoid spending, don’t go to a certain store. Invest in a hobby or something that will keep you busy and satisfy that desire to have something new.

    

 

  

Read other articles from ClearOne’s BlogOne:  Debt Can be Bad for your Health

Contact ClearOne Advantage by clicking here

Read client testimonials here

Learn about ClearOne Advantage’s 100% Satisfaction Guarantee

ClearOne Advantage on the Inc. 500

September 21st, 2012

Check out ClearOne Advantage on the Inc.com 500|5000 list here

ClearOne Advantage on the Inc. 500

ClearOne Advantage #25 in Financial Services List

ClearOne #6 in Maryland

View the press release here

Inc. Magazine Unveils 31st Annual List of America’s Fastest-Growing Private Companies—the Inc. 500 ClearOne Advantage ranks No. 392 on the 2012 Inc. 500 with three-year sales growth of 959%.

August 30th, 2012

New York, NY (PRWEB) August 27, 2012

Inc. magazine today ranked Maryland-based ClearOne Advantage No. 392 on its 31st annual Inc. 500|5000, an exclusive ranking of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. The list represents the most comprehensive look at the most important segment of the economy—America’s independent entrepreneurs. Companies such as Microsoft, Zappos, Intuit, Jamba Juice, Zipcar, Clif Bar, Vizio, Oracle, and many other well-known names gained early exposure as members of the Inc. 500|5000.

“We were thrilled to be included in Inc.’s prestigious list of fastest growing private companies. The distinction is a testament that our dedication and hard work in creating a viable, full service debt resolution provider that delivers superior debt negotiation and attentive, tailored customer service to our clients has truly paid off in the five years since we formed,” said Tomas Gordon, CEO of ClearOne Advantage.

ClearOne Advantage was the highest ranked Maryland-based financial service company on the 2012 list and the twenty-fifth ranked financial service company nationally. The company also landed in the top ten fastest growing Baltimore, Md. based private companies, at No. 6.

The 2012 Inc. 500, unveiled in the September issue of Inc. (available on newsstands August 21 to November 15 and on Inc.com), is the most competitive crop in the list’s history. To make the cut, companies had to have achieved a staggering minimum of 770% in sales growth. The Inc. 500’ s aggregate revenue is $15.7 billion, with a median three-year growth of 1,431 percent. The companies on this year’s Inc. 500 employ more than 48,000 people and generated over 40,000 jobs in the past three years. Complete results of the Inc. 500|5000, including company profiles and an interactive database that can be sorted by industry, region, and other criteria, can be found at http://www.inc.com/500.

“Now, more than ever, we depend on Inc. 500/5000 companies to spur innovation, provide jobs, and drive the economy forward. Growth companies, not large corporations, are where the action is,” says Inc. magazine Editor Eric Schurenberg.

Methodology

The 2012 Inc. 500|5000 is ranked according to percentage revenue growth when comparing 2008 to 2011. To qualify, companies must have been founded and generating revenue by March 31, 2008. They had to be U.S.-based, privately held, for profit, and independent—not subsidiaries or divisions of other companies—as of December 31, 2011. (Since then, a number of companies on the list have gone public or been acquired.) The minimum revenue required for 2008 is $100,000; the minimum for 2011 is $2 million. As always, Inc. reserves the right to decline applicants for subjective reasons. Companies on the Inc. 500 are featured in Inc.’s September issue. They represent the top tier of the Inc. 5000, which can be found at http://www.inc.com/500.

About Inc.

Founded in 1979 and acquired in 2005 by Mansueto Ventures, Inc. is the only major brand dedicated exclusively to owners and managers of growing private companies, with the aim to deliver real solutions for today’s innovative company builders. Total monthly audience reach for the brand has grown significantly from 2,000,000 in 2010 to over 6,000,000 today. For more information, visit http://www.inc.com.

About ClearOne Advantage, LLC

ClearOne Advantage is a full-service debt resolution company providing resolution of credit cards and other unsecured debts. Our executive leadership team is comprised of financial industry professionals with expertise in many of the industries that provide consumer lending services, making ClearOne Advantage the obvious choice when looking to resolve debt. In addition, ClearOne Advantage is a technology leader with its AdvantagePOINT software platform, which is designed to provide clients with stream lined service. To learn more about the products and services that make ClearOne Advantage an easy choice in debt resolution, call 1-888-785-5376 or visit http://www.ClearOneAdvantage.com.

ClearOne Advantage Donates to Local Youth Group ClearOne Advantage, a Maryland-based debt resolution company, is proud to announce its corporate donation to the Metro Maryland Youth for Christ (MMYC)

July 11th, 2012

BALTIMORE, MD (PRWEB) July 11, 2012

ClearOne Advantage, a Maryland-based debt resolution company, is proud to announce its corporate donation to the Metro Maryland Youth for Christ (MMYC).

“We are thrilled to lend our support to a wonderful organization that successfully strives to get their ministry message out to young people in a way that is current and relatable to them,” says Jon Repetti, Executive Vice President at ClearOne Advantage.

The MMYC works together with local churches, agencies and other Christian partners to provide sustainable youth and family ministry. The Maryland chapter is part of the larger Youth for Christ USA and Youth for Christ International organizations, which has ministries in over 200 cities throughout the United States and over 90 countries around the world. The national organization includes over 2,000 ministry sites, including high school and middle school campus clubs, teen parent programs, juvenile justice centers, community centers and urban clubs.

Founded in 1944, YFC serves local communities around the world through their commitment to youth evangelism and biblical Christianity. YFC strives to demonstrate and communicate a message of hope, grace and love in a variety of different cultural settings. Globally, Youth of Christ is comprised of 35,000 staff and volunteers and 125,000 young people who, according to organizations website “make a first-time decision to trust Christ as their personal Savior through the ministry of YFC.” Worldwide offices are headquartered in Denver, Colo.

To learn more, visit ClearOneAdvantage.com

ABOUT

ClearOne Advantage is a full-service debt resolution company providing resolution of credit cards and other unsecured debts. Our executive leadership team is comprised of financial industry professionals with expertise in many of the industries that provide consumer lending services, making ClearOne Advantage the obvious choice when looking to resolve debt. In addition, ClearOne Advantage is a technology leader with its AdvantagePOINT software platform, which is designed to provide clients with stream lined service. To learn more about the products and services that make ClearOne Advantage an easy choice in debt resolution, call 1-888-785-5376 or visit ClearOneAdvantage.com.

ClearOne Advantage Announces Sponsorship of 2012 Charm City Youth League

May 10th, 2012

ClearOne Advantage Announces Sponsorship of 2012 Charm City Youth League

ClearOne Advantage, LLC, a Maryland-based debt resolution company, is proud to be a Major Sponsor of the Charm City Youth Lacrosse League. The Charm City Youth Lacrosse League program provides lacrosse instruction, league play and mentoring to vulnerable Baltimore City youth at no cost.

Baltimore, MD (PRWEB) May 10, 2012

ClearOne Advantage, LLC, a Maryland-based debt resolution company, is proud to be a Major Sponsor of the Charm City Youth Lacrosse League.

“We are thrilled to lend our support for such a fantastically important organization that gets local, underserved children involved in structured athletics while instilling positive messages of teamwork, leadership and camaraderie,” said Tomas Gordon, CEO of ClearOne Advantage.

The Charm City Youth Lacrosse League program provides basic lacrosse instruction, league play and mentoring to vulnerable Baltimore City youth for eight weeks during spring and early summer at no cost. Now in its fourth year, the 2012 season has grown to include over 300 elementary and middle-school children and more than 100 volunteers.

The program also features weekly speakers from the Baltimore business, civic and sports communities to engage students on the importance of education, civic responsibility, and community involvement. Previous guest speakers have included former NFL defensive tackle Reggie E. White, Congressman Elijah Cummings and former Baltimore Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke.

The 2012 Charm City Youth Lacrosse League’s Major Sponsors are ClearOne Advantage, Comcast, The Cordish Companies, DLA Piper, Fellowship of Christian Athletes Lacrosse, Kelly & Associates Insurance Group, KTBSPayroll, Pfizer, PNC Bank, Verizon, Warren Brown, Esq., Wells Fargo and the Harry & Jeannette Weinberg Foundation, Inc.

Supporting Partners of the league are the Baltimore City Recreation and Parks, Baltimore Community Foundation, Calvert Street Capital Partners, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Lichtenberg & Associates, MedStar Health, Pepsi, Royal Farms, Inc., Sidus Group, Under Armour and US Lacrosse.

The league’s Partner High Schools are: Atholton (Girls); and Boys’ Latin, Calvert Hall, Cristo Rey, Friends, Gilman, Landon, Loyola Blakefield, McDonogh, & St. Paul’s (Boys).

Service vendors for the 2012 Charm City Youth Lacrosse League are Bollinger Insurance, Just4UTransit, LaxWorld, & U-STORE.

About ClearOne Advantage, LLC

ClearOne Advantage is a full-service debt resolution company providing resolution of credit cards and other unsecured debts. Our executive leadership team is comprised of financial industry professionals with expertise in many of the industries that provide consumer lending services, making ClearOne Advantage the obvious choice when looking to resolve debt. To learn more about the products and services that make ClearOne Advantage an easy choice in debt resolution, call 1-888-785-5376 or visit ClearOneAdvantage.com.

Tougher Regulation on Credit Card Protection Plans Applauded by ClearOne Advantage

April 3rd, 2012

Baltimore, MD (April 3, 2012) - Executives at ClearOne Advantage, a Maryland-based debt resolution company, are encouraged by recent efforts being made by federal regulators in creating stricter guidelines for credit card payment protection plans, and urge consumers to make educated decisions before signing up.

“These plans are being marketed to credit card customers as a safety net for unforeseen misfortunes, but all may not be what it seems”, says Tomas Gordon, CEO of ClearOne Advantage.

Protection plans, offered by credit card issuers such as Discover, Bank of America, Citibank and others as a way to put monthly payments on hold in times of illness or financial distress, have become big business for credit card companies. Credit lenders collected $2.4 billion in fees from the 24 million credit card accounts enrolled in payment protection plans in 2009, according to a report released by the Government Accountability Office in March 2011 on the nine largest credit lenders. From those collected fees, lenders posted $1.3 billion in pretax profits, with an additional quarter of the fees going to marketing costs and administering the plans. Only 21% of fees, roughly $518 million annually, are spent on paying out actual benefits to customers, the report found.

Some have noted that the increase in marketing efforts of payment plans by their issuers has come as a way to circumvent the regulations that were introduced into the industry by the 2009 passage of the federal Credit CARD Act, which aims to secure transparency and fairness to consumer credit practices, have made credit issuers more reliant on the revenue generated from their payment protection plans.

Furthermore, opponents argue that the plans are often confusing and offer no real value to consumers who need them. For example, plans are often marketed without disclosing much of the initial fine print and banks return only 21 cents of every dollar in payment-protection premiums to consumers in the form of suspended or cancelled debt, a recent report found.

“The belief among consumers that these plans act as a type of emergency insurance is misleading and regulation of this auxiliary product is necessary”, Gordon said.

Calls for deeper regulation have not gone unanswered. The January 26 regulatory filing by Discover Financial Services has prompted both the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to further investigate the company’s business practices, including credit protection plans. Industry watchdogs are hopeful the probe will lead to heightened transparency and fairness for one of the credit industry’s most profitable commodities. 

“There are certainly other means that consumers can achieve a financial peace of mind in times of crisis,” said Gordon. “At ClearOne Advantage, we aim to guide individuals struggling with debt in ways that are both beneficial and cost-effective.”

To learn more visit ClearOneAdvantage.com.

 

ABOUT:

ClearOne Advantage is a full-service debt settlement company providing settlements of credit cards and other unsecured debts. Our executive leadership team is comprised of financial industry professionals with expertise in many of the industries that provide consumer lending services, making ClearOne Advantage the obvious choice when looking to settle debt. To learn more about the products and services that make ClearOne Advantage an easy choice in debt settlement call 1-888-785-5376 or visit ClearOneAdvantage.com.

 

RESOURCES:

Government Accountability Office Report on Consumer Costs for Credit Protection (March2011)

Consumer Bureau Threatens Banks’ Credit Card Protection Profits (American Banker)

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Positive Economic Signs Elicit Caution from ClearOne Advantage

January 13th, 2012

Summary:

ClearOne Advantage executives caution consumers against falling back into the credit-debt cycle—a potentially tempting option in light of positive economic reports.

Baltimore, MD, January 13, 2011- Executives at ClearOne Advantage, a Maryland-based debt resolution company, encourage cautious optimism in response to recently reported positive economic signs.

The jobless rate fell to 8.5 percent, the lowest rate in nearly two years (since February 2009) according to the U.S. Department of Labor:

“Both the number of unemployed persons (13.1 million) and the unemployment rate (8.5 percent) continued to trend down in December. The unemployment rate has declined by 0.6 percentage point (sic) since August,” according to the most recent report.

Furthermore: “The data surpassed economists’ expectations and mark a six-month stretch in which the economy generated 100,000 jobs or more in each month. That hasn’t happened since April 2006,” reported MSNCB’s Bottomline.

But millions continue to struggle. For example, the unemployment rate does not include the underemployed—those who have some, perhaps part-time work, but cannot afford to meet all of their financial obligations. Those consumers often rely on credit cards to make ends meet. But ClearOne Advantage executives recommend paying off or resolving unsecured debt over the continued credit-debt cycle for long-term financial success.

“Relying on credit keeps consumers dependent on—literally indebted to—credit card companies,” said ClearOne Advantage CEO Tomas Gordon. “Debt settlement can be an effective way out of the debt cycle for certain consumers.”

Debt settlement is a process in which debt professionals attempt to negotiate their clients’ unsecured debts (e.g., credit card debt, medical debt) down to a more affordable amount, until a mutually agreeable amount is reached between the creditor and the consumer.

“Simply put, debt settlement is a way for consumers to resolve their overburdening debt, even though—through no fault of their own—they cannot afford to repay their debts in full,” said Gordon.

Debt resolution options like debt settlement, including consumer credit counseling and bankruptcy, are especially helpful at this point in the economic recovery. While some economic figures offer hope that the country is heading in the right direction, experts agree that recovery is slow at best.

“This is not the time to start depending on credit, a mistake many were forced to make when unemployment rates began to soar at the beginning of the recession,” said Gordon. “Instead, this is a great time to break the debt cycle and learn how to get free from credit card debt completely.  For those who are able, we encourage them to pay off their debt in full and live within their means going forward. For consumers struggling with larger amounts of debt, we ask that they give us a call to see if we can help.”

To learn more, visit ClearOneAdvantage.com. To read more debt settlement articles click here

 

ABOUT US:

ClearOne Advantage is a full-service debt settlement company providing settlements of credit cards and other unsecured debts. Our executive leadership team is comprised of financial industry professionals with expertise in many of the industries that provide consumer lending services, making ClearOne Advantage the obvious choice when looking to settle debt. To learn more about the products and services that make ClearOne Advantage an easy choice in debt settlement call 1-888-785-5376 or visit ClearOneAdvantage.com.    

 

 

RESOURSES:

 

BLS.gov

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm

 

MSNBC.com

http://bottomline.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/01/06/10002777-hiring-gained-traction-in-december

 

CONTACT INFO:

ClearOne Advantage

1501 S. Clinton St. Ste. 320

Baltimore, MD 21224 

1-888-785-5376

CS@ClearOneAdvantage.com
www.ClearOneAdvantage.com

 

ClearOne Advantage Recommends Budgeting, Financial Planning for Consumers in the New Year

January 3rd, 2012

Summary:

Encouraged by a surge in the Consumer Confidence Index, ClearOne Advantage executives are cautiously optimistic for an improved economy in 2012, and are recommending that consumers begin 2012 with a financial budget in order to spend wisely and avoid additional credit card debt in the New Year.

Baltimore, MD, December 30, 2011- Executives at ClearOne Advantage, a Maryland-based debt resolution company, encouraged by an increase in the Consumer Confidence Index (CCI), are urging consumers to start the New Year on the right financial foot.

“As we head into the New Year, we can already see some encouraging signs,” said ClearOne Advantage Chief Operating Officer John Wrinn referring to the CCI, which rose much more than expected in December. Wrinn and other ClearOne Advantage executives are encouraged by this news, as well as holiday retail reports that indicate better-than-expected sales.

The CCI is issued by The Conference Board, an independent economic research organization. Their monthly Consumer Confident Survey is “a monthly report detailing consumer attitudes and buying intentions.” Simply put, the more confident consumers feel about the economy, the more likely they are to make purchases. According to an article by CNBC, “the surge builds on another big increase in November, when the index rose almost 15 points from the month before.”

This news comes in the wake of a holiday shopping season that surpassed expectation, according to the National Retail Federation, and—with returns and gift cards pulling consumers back into stores—is not yet over.

“While these positive indicators are certainly welcome news, consumers should be ready to spend money wisely in the New Year,” said Wrinn. To help their debt settlement clients and all consumers in the New Year, ClearOne Advantage is offering a few financial tips for starting 2012 off right:

  • Prioritize 2012 goals: Instead of casually declaring New Year’s resolutions, write down one specific and realistic goal.
  • Plan now for next year: With the holidays still fresh in mind, consumers should record all of their holiday spending, save receipts in a “Holidays 2011” envelope, and plan to set aside cash next year.
  • Use gift cards before they expire: Consumer should avoid throwing gift cards in a drawer or waiting until stores begin imposing fees or reducing the value of the card. But once in the store, consumers should stick as close as possible to the gift card’s value.
  • Budget: Tracking expenses can reveal exactly where money goes each month, which can also help consumers find ways to save more money by cutting unnecessary spending. Consumers should learn a few options for creating a budget, choose the best method for their family, and stick to it year round.
  • Commit to using coupons consistently: Shoppers can save $5 to $15 per grocery trip, and possibly more with the grocery store’s loyalty savings card.
  • Start filing taxes: Start collecting records now, find necessary forms on the IRS website and consider e-filing. When taxpayers e-file, they received their refunds faster (especially when using direct deposit) and confirmation that their forms were received. Plus taxpayers who find out they owe this year will have more time to plan for that payment.

“There are many ways that individuals can start the New Year with realistic financial goals,” said Wrinn. “At ClearOne Advantage, we aim to help individuals struggling with overwhelming debt get the help they deserve in 2012.”

Wrinn explained that while some economic indicators give people hope about the country’s economic improvements, many individuals will continue to feel financial pressure while unemployment rates remain high. Companies like ClearOne Advantage help consumers settle their unsecured debts, such as credit card debt and medical bills, at the time they need professional assistance.

To learn more visit ClearOneAdvantage.com.

ABOUT US:

ClearOne Advantage is a full-service debt settlement company providing settlements of credit cards and other unsecured debts. Our executive leadership team is comprised of financial industry professionals with expertise in many of the industries that provide consumer lending services, making ClearOne Advantage the obvious choice when looking to settle debt. To learn more about the products and services that make ClearOne Advantage an easy choice in debt settlement call 1-888-785-5376 or visit ClearOneAdvantage.com.

RESOURSES:

CNBC.com

http://www.cnbc.com/id/45795931

The Conference Board

http://www.conference-board.org/data/consumerconfidence.cfm

Consumer Reports Poll

ConsumerReports.org

National Retail Federation

http://www.nrf.com/modules.php?name=News&op=viewlive&sp_id=1278

 

CONTACT INFO:

ClearOne Advantage

1501 S. Clinton St. Ste. 320

Baltimore, MD 21224

1-888-785-5376

CS@ClearOneAdvantage.com www.ClearOneAdvantage.com

Read More articles from ClearOne here