I am a single mother with a 10-year-old son. I was not able to pay the high minimum payments due so I decided to consolidate all my credit cards with a company called National Center For Debt Elimination (NCDE). At that time my credit limit was $2,200, but my balance was about $2,400 because of the high APR and high finance charges and late fees that they charged me while I was trying to sign up with NCDE to consolidate my bills. After I made a few payments to DMB through NCDE, DMB agreed to lower my APR, which was at about 25% (even though I didn't have any bad credit and always made my payments on time), to 12.9%, where it is now. I have been making $51 payments to DMB through NCDE every month since March, 2001, and every month they keep charging me $29.90 for finance charges, so in actuality only $21.10 is going toward my balance. So I requested that NCDE contact DMB and ask them to drop the over limit amount because I wasn't getting anywhere and the whole reason my balance is so high and over the limit (it's at $2,836.74 today) is because of their finance charges (and late fees from the past). They would not drop any of the balance. I feel like I am in an impossible situation because the whole reason I consolidated in the first place was so that I could pay less every month (which I'm not) and so they could lower the APR (which is all they did) and stop charging me late fees and high finance charges. Instead of getting ahead I'm falling behind.
This is a very frustrating situation. I feel like I'm not really getting anywhere in paying off this debt. What is the point of consolidating when nothing changes except the APR? Don't the consolidation companies have more power than that? Maybe I'm just with the wrong company, but I doubt it because all these credit companies seem to be the same and they have WAY TOO MUCH POWER over consumers. Click here to read other Rip-off Reports on Direct Merchants Bank