Frequently Asked Questions

“Debt Counselling was formally introduced in the National Credit Act to help over-indebted consumers, especially in our current economic crisis. The goal of Debt Counselling is to assist a consumer to repay all of their debt at an affordable installment and to make them debt free. It is there to help you, so why not make use of it?”

“You will immediately experience the relief that Debt Review offers. Within the first 5 days, we get accurate account balances and account information from your credit providers, who will immediately be aware that you have applied for debt review.  Our team work tirelessly to assist you with the process, including attending to cancellation of existing debit orders, within the rules of the credit providers and the debt counsellor works out a repayment plan that will be acceptable to your credit providers, where you will make a single payment to a Payment Distribution Agency, who will distribute the money according to the plan. During the first 60 working days, your Credit Providers will not be allowed to implement action against you. During this time we will prepare your final repayment plan.”

“For your convenience, your application can be completed at a time that suits you, in a way that works best for you.  You are of course welcome to visit our offices, should you wish.”

“We negotiate with credit providers to lower your monthly installments by extending your repayment periods and will, where possible try and negotiate lower interest rates on your account.”

“Should we determine that you are not over indebted or that debt counselling is not the correct solution for you, we will happily refer you to another process that would suit your particular circumstances.”

“Debt Counselling has evolved steadily since it was launched in June 2007 by the National Credit Act. As is the case with the implementation of almost all new legislation, all the grey areas in the Act had to be found and tested in court in order to have the Act run smoothly. We are convinced that the industry has already reached the point where Debt Counselling is now running the way it was intended to by the legislator. We have successfully helped people through Debt Counselling and we are happy to see that more and more people are realizing that the system is working. So the answer is yes, Debt Counselling does work.

In some isolated cases there were some bad apples in the industry in the form of Debt Counsellors who were in it for a quick buck. Most of these bad apples have since been worked out of the system, ensuring a dependable industry that is helping thousands of South Africans to deal with their financial distress. South Africa has managed to bring Debt Counselling to a point where it is regarded as one of the most successful of its sort in the world.

It is imperative that you choose the correct Debt Counsellor though, as we are of the opinion that there are still certain Debt Counsellors in the industry who do not possess the necessary skills, competence and experience to offer you the full benefits that Debt Counselling can offer.

“We will always endeavor to have our offer accepted by the credit providers, using certain rules that have been agreed to in the industry.  Should they come back and want more money, we will try and negotiate, but may have to come back to you with their counter offer for you to accept which may result in a small increase in your monthly contribution.  This does not affect your debt counselling fees.”

“As soon as you apply for Debt Review with Financial Freedom Solutions, we will notify all your Credit Providers that you are under Debt Review. This is done within 5 days (usually less than 48 hours) and from that point onward they should not contact you.  Unfortunately from time to time it does happen that some Credit Providers make contact with our clients directly, but when that happens, you can merely refer them to your Debt Counsellor who will deal with the matter further.”

“Because you are reading this it probably means that you will benefit from Debt Counselling. The main thing is not to wait too long before you contact us. The earlier you approach us, the easier it will be to find a solution for you.”

“As long as you make regular monthly payments and we are able, with your help, to accept what the credit provider wants on a monthly basis, there should be no risk to your home or vehicle.  Debt review can however help save your home and vehicle, but this will obviously depend on your unique circumstances. Factors that will determine this will include the following:

  • Have you received a Section 129 letter from your Credit Provider, and if so, how long ago?
  • Have you been served with a summons in respect of your mortgage bond or vehicle finance?
  • How many vehicles do you have and what are they used for? Quad bikes and Jet ski’s will for example be regarded as luxury vehicles and might have to be returned to the bank.
  • Are you giving your full cooperation in the program?

The bottom line remains that you will always be in a better position to keep your home and your vehicle when you are under Debt Review, rather than trying to fight off the banks yourself.”

“The length of time will be different for everybody, as each individual’s situation is unique. In order to lower your monthly installments, we will have to extend your repayment periods. However, in some cases, we can manage to convince Credit Providers to also lower their interest rates, which means that your repayment period will not be stretched much longer.

Your last day of payment will be indicated in your debt repayment plan. We always suggest that should you find yourself with some extra money at the end of the month, that you consider making an additional payment to one or more credit providers, so help reduce the repayment period even more.”

“All of our fees are charged inline with the NCR guidelines to ensure there is no overcharging.  We will explain all fees to you when you contact us, and all are explained in your application pack, so there are no hidden costs!  It’s important to remember that our fees are all included in your debt repayment plan, so you don’t need to find more money to pay!”

“As a general rule, no you won’t.  Certain Magistrates do request it, but we will notify you long in advance and even then it will just be to confirm some details.”

“No. We will never contact your work unless you have asked us to do so or we are required to by law.”

“When you are under Debt Review, your Credit Providers will not be in a position to “blacklist” you as long as you keep up with regular payments. If the “blacklisting” took place before you applied for Debt Review, it will however reflect on your credit record. This is a further reason why you should rather apply earlier than later for Debt Review.”

“Sadly, if you are unemployed and you do not receive a monthly salary or other income such as  rental income or pension, you will not be able to apply for debt review, which requires you to have a monthly source of income, there are however alternative solutions available that can assist you, so please still contact us.”

“You can still contact us as there maybe another means of assisting you. The sooner you contact us, the greater our changes are for finding a solution for you.”

“Don’t worry – you can still contact us. We can still help you with your other debts so sooner you contact us, the greater our chances are for finding a solution for you.”

“No you may not. Our main aim is to get you debt free so the law says you can have no access to credit while under debt review. Once all of your accounts are paid up, we can then issue you with a clearance certificate and you will then be able to apply for credit again, if you wish to.”

“When under Debt Review, a flag indicating that you are under Debt Review will be on your name at the Credit Bureaux. Once you have paid all of your accounts, we will instruct the Credit Bureaux to remove the flag and there will be no indication that you have ever been under Debt Review.”

“We would always recommend that you have credit life insurance on your accounts to help in this situation.  If you don’t have, we can arrange this for you.  If you are retrenched and don’t have insurance, we will notify your credit providers of your change of employment status.  Some are willing to make arrangements, while others still expect monthly payments.  If it important to notify us immediately if this happens!”

“We would always recommend that you have credit life insurance on your accounts to help in this situation.  If you don’t have, we can arrange this for you.  If you are retrenched and don’t have insurance, we will notify your credit providers of your change of employment status.  Some are willing to make arrangements, while others still expect monthly payments.  If it important to notify us immediately if this happens!

PLEASE NOTE: Debt Review does not provide payment holidays and should never be abused in order to evade your obligations.”

“No, there should be no negative impact, because if a potential new employer does a credit check on you and discovers that you are under Debt Review at the time, in our opinion it will display to the employer that you did the responsible thing when you started to experience financial problems – thereby earning you respect.
If you leave your debt as is it would be much worse. The employer would pick up that you have defaults on your credit record and see that you did nothing about it – this would not create a good impression of how you handle situations.”

“We do not mess with your insurance at all.  Insurance that exists on credit agreements and is disclosed to us by the credit provider is included in your monthly payments.  Any other insurance, such as vehicle insurance you will continue to pay yourself, as it doesn’t form part of debt review.”

“No we do not. Our goal is to get our clients free from debt and more loans will not solve your financial problems.”



Debt Counselling Form