Many Americans don’t understand the difference between secured and unsecured debt. In fact, few Americans even know either secured or unsecured debt exists.
* Secured debt – Debt backed or secured by collateral to reduce the risk associated with lending. An example would be a mortgage, your house is considered collateral towards the debt. If you default on repayment, the bank seizes your house, sells it and uses the proceeds to pay back the debt.
* Unsecured debt – A debt that is not tied to any item of property. A creditor doesn’t have the right to grab property to satisfy the debt if you default. The creditor’s only remedy is to sue you and get a judgment. Credit card debt falls into this category.
The most straightforward way to understand the difference between unsecured and secured debt to is to work out if your creditor can take away any item or property in the case that you are not able to repay the overdue amount in time. Common examples of unsecured debt, other than credit cards, are medical bills and store cards where you aren’t putting up any materials as security for the debt. Car payments and home loans however do have physical items attached.
Secured and unsecured debt also make a difference when it comes to bankruptcy. In Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you can make the choice of either keeping the product or property and pay off your debt in some other way. When a debt is secured, the creditor has rights in the security (or collateral) in addition to the rights against the debtor. The debtor’s personal liability may be discharged in Chapter 7 while lien rights in the collateral pass through bankruptcy unaffected unless they are avoided or stripped down. In Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you are allowed to keep the merchandise or property, but you will be allowed to pay off your debt according to the Chapter 13 plan.
Danger of Both
Debt Settlement agencies will tell you that both secured and unsecured debt are dangerous. With secured debt, you could lose your home, your car or other possessions. With Unsecured debt, your credit score could take a major beating, any future loans could have seriously high interest rates and more.
Many households across the United States have over $ 25,000 in unsecured debt. In fact, the average American carries over $ 9,000 in credit card debt alone. This raises stress levels, causes sleep disorders and sometimes even depression. Hiring a qualified debt consolidation or debt settlement company can help you clear your debt quicker, pay off your loans for less than you owe and move you towards financial freedom.
Unsecured debt includes:
* Credit Card Debt
* Medical/Hospital Bills
* Department Store Charge Cards
* Oil/Gas Credit Cards
* Personal Loans (unsecured)
Related Debt Articles