- 2 min read
Debt Coach Interview at Finovate Spring 2011
Brad Stroh (CEO) speaks with Finovate about Bills. com's newest product, Debt Coach: a comparison and recommendation tool to help consumers find out how to resolve their debts.
I am here with Brad Stroh, CEO of Bills. com, and you have introduced a product today, can you tell us little bit more about that.
“Yes, sure be happy to, so a debt coach is what we launched today from Bills. We just launched last night live on the site. It is a tool that brings transparency and information to consumers as they evaluate their debt decision. So, credit card debt, unsecured bills, we help them understand who they owe, what they owe, what their goals are and then help them educate themselves on things like credit counseling, debt resolution, debt consolidation and optimize payment plans like avalanche or snowball so that they are really empowered to make the right decisions, to solve their debt problems. ”
So, are users’ bringing in their current account information and then your service analyzing that with recommendations?
“Yeah, great question, so kind of three core inputs, one is they self state a bunch of information about themselves. That’s how much they owe, that’s what their income is if they own a home. We combine that with a force rank list of preferences, so how things like total cost to debt freedom, minimum payments, how much they want to save, their credit rating. How those all rank on a spectrum and then for free we roll that together with accurate precise information that pulls from their credit report. Again free to the consumer, that shows them who they owe, what their payments are, what their interest rates are, those three things go together to empower our decision engine which we’re able to run, which you can see in the background here, but it then says based on your needs, your goals and your situation, here is the optimal solution for you and then we give them individual customized product pages for each of their five pay off options for their specific situation. ”
Are there any costs involved, is it available right now?
“Free, online at Bills. com just launched last night, this was two years in the works, it is available right now. ”
Perfect, thank you so much for your time.
“Thank you. ”
Struggling with debt?
Mortgages, credit cards, student loans, personal loans, and auto loans are common types of debts. According to the NY Federal Reserve total household debt as of Q4 2022 was $16.91 trillion. Housing debt totaled $12.26 trillion and non-housing debt was $4.65 trillion.
A significant percentage of people in the US are struggling with monthly payments and about 26% of households in the United States have debt in collections. According to data gathered by Urban.org from a sample of credit reports, the median debt in collections is $1,739. Credit card debt is prevalent and 3% have delinquent or derogatory card debt. The median debt in collections is $422.
The amount of debt and debt in collections vary by state. For example, in North Dakota, 16% have any kind of debt in collections and the median debt in collections is $1866. Medical debt is common and 7% have that in collections. The median medical debt in collections is $629.
Avoiding collections isn’t always possible. A sudden loss of employment, death in the family, or sickness can lead to financial hardship. Fortunately, there are many ways to deal with debt including an aggressive payment plan, debt consolidation loan, or a negotiated settlement.