Money Health

Meet Our Clients: Mike M.

Our Client Mike M.
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After Running From Debt, This Freedom Debt Relief Graduate Finally Chased it Down

Hope came streaming through the radio speakers at 3 o’clock in the morning for Mike M., a grade school science teacher and Freedom Debt Relief graduate. “It was like 2:00, 3:00 in the morning, and I’m at work, and we had the radio on. All of a sudden, the commercial came on, the radio ad like from three years ago. “Are you stuck in debt? Call Freedom Debt Relief…we’ll figure out a way to help you out.”‘

Mike was awake for this commercial because he was working a second job on the late shift to pay off his debts. His life was similar to the millions of other Americans who are struggling with Debt. As Mike explains:

“I was trying to make ends meet with two jobs. It was not easy. It seemed like no matter what I did, I’d make the payments, I would try to get ahead, and then something would come up. Something would always come up: car issue or just whatever it was. It seemed like every time I got two steps forward, I ended up taking like 100 steps backwards.”

Taking the first step

After years of paying his debts down only just to watch them come back up, Mike decided to see if Freedom Debt Relief could help him get rid of his debt once and for all. “I said, ‘You know what? Let me check it out.'”

The next day he called and spent nearly an hour speaking with one of our Certified Debt Consultants. They more they talked, the more he knew he was finally on the right track: “I remember just sitting there, spelling it out, thinking like, ‘You know if this works, this will definitely be like what I want. This will get me where I need to go.'”

Working with FDR

The Certified Debt Consultant worked with Mike and designed an FDR program to help him get out of debt with a monthly program payment that fit his budget easily, so Mike enrolled and began making his deposits each month. Meanwhile, Freedom Debt Relief created a negotiation strategy to get his creditors to settle Mike’s debts for as little money as possible.

Creditors are typically willing to settle for less money on a debt only if the other option is getting no money at all. That’s why after Mike and other Freedom Debt Relief clients enroll, they stop making payments to the creditors on their enrolled accounts. This was hard for Mike initially, but he soon understood why it was necessary.

“It felt weird at first, just to not have to pay these bills,” but then Mike realized that through the Freedom Debt Relief program, his creditors would still get paid-just less than the amount he owed them originally; “I’m not paying them, but I am paying them!”

Soon, Freedom Debt Relief was negotiating settlements and Mike was using his Client Dashboard regularly to track his progress in the program. “You could check your balances, you could check what’s left to pay off. It was really simple to do.”

A debt-free future

Mike also clearly remembers when, about 3 years after he enrolled, he logged onto his Client Dashboard to see that his final settlement payment had been processed. He’d graduated his FDR program and was free of all the debts.

“You get the email with the graduation packet in there that said, ‘Congratulations from Freedom Debt Relief. You’ve finished paying off your loans. Congratulations on being on the road to being debt-free.’ It was like a celebration. It was like the coolest thing. I was looking for confetti to pop out of the computer!”

Today, free of those debts, Mike focuses on looking ahead and saving money. “I can actually put away the recommended 10% of your paycheck into savings because I don’t have these other debts that I have to deal with first. Credit cards are paid off. Credit score took a huge jump.”

While the Freedom Debt Relief program typically has a negative impact on credit score, doesn’t help improve credit scores, it’s not unusual for clients like Mike to see their credit score go up after they put all their debts behind them. We’re thrilled that he’s in a much better place financially, and proud to have been his partner on his journey to better financial health.

“I know that I made the payments every month, but you guys were instrumental in putting it all together. I couldn’t have done it without you guys.” says Mike.

See more Freedom Debt Relief reviews and client stories.

Jessica Thiefels is the CEO of Jessica Thiefels Consulting and has been writing for more than 10 years. She’s written for AARP, Reader’s Digest and Lifehack and regularly contributes to The Financial Diet, Homes.com and more.