Who is Harrine Freeman? She was once $19,000 in debt while on an income of $21,000 and managed to herself out of debt. Today, she runs a credit counseling business, H.E. Freeman Enterprises, to help others get out of debt and she wrote How To Get Out Of Debt , the book I took a look at this last week in anticipation of this review.
The full title of the book is quite a mouthful, it’s How to Get Out of Debt: Get an “A” Credit Rating for Free Using the System I’ve Used Successfully With Thousands of Clients but starts very appropriately, a description of how Harrine got into and out of debt. In fact, her introduction to credit is something I warned about several days ago (don’t be tempted by those free t-shirts with credit card application  tables at school) when she applied to all sorts of credit cards just for keychains, t-shirts, and water bottles. Then she did what the credit card companies wanted her to do, spend spend spend. From there the story reads like every terrible credit story you’ve heard of. She let her family use her cards. She signed a car note for her boyfriend. Just when you think the story is going to end badly, it takes a turn for the better. She basically talked to credit card representative with a soul who advised her to write letters to all her creditors and explain her situation. She wrote letters, worked out payment plans, and got out of debt the old fashioned way.
The book essentially goes into the various parts of her experience in greater detail, including what one should do if they were also in that situation. One of the best things about the book is all the resources included in the appendices. For example, Appendix A lists all the Consumer Protection Agencies and State Resources and Appendix D lists the statue of limitations on delinquent debt. So, if you have a promissory note that has been delinquent for over 6 years in the state of Maryland, you can have a lawsuit dismissed because the state of limitations has expired. While a lawsuit can still be filed, it will be dismissed because of the state of limitations. Now, if there was a judgment, then they have twelve years to collect… useful information huh?
If someone is in debt and really lost in what they should be doing, this book will likely provide some insight into their next steps. I found it difficult to analyze from that perspective because I’ve never had issues like the ones mentioned in the book (I had lots of credit cards but I always paid them off within the grace period) but I thought it was well organized and contained lots of useful information. Is it worth buying? I’d say that anyone in debt should avoid buying anything when they can get it at the library for free. If your library doesn’t have it, ask that they buy it. If you’re in debt, the first step is to quit spending money. 🙂