Debt Counsellor Focus
Each month we enjoy interviewing people who work in the industry so that our readers (and others in the industry) can find out a bit about how they got into the industry and how they run their business or practice. This month we spoke to Blue Star Consultants.
How long have you been a DC?
For two years now.
Why did you become a DC?
With a background in client services, I have always been drawn to helping people. I was deeply concerned when I learned of the alarming rate of over-indebtedness in South Africa. I felt that I had the right skills and background to help people deal with the financial and emotional strain they were facing and to make a positive difference in their lives.
What area do you practice in?
We are situated in Cape Town, but help clients all over the country.
Do you have a small/med/large DC company?
I would say that the company is medium-sized.
What makes your business a success?
I have a team of unbelievable people who contribute greatly to our success each and every day. While I can mention many aspects, I believe that our success can be mainly attributed to two things: That personal touch – We treat each client as if they are our only one; and our work ethic – We fight tirelessly to provide the best level of service and outcome for our clients.
Where do you find new business?
Through various online and direct marketing channels. I also obtain many clients through referrals from my existing client base.
Who are your favourite and most time-consuming credit providers at the moment?
Favourite: Lewis Stores and Consumer Friend.
Most time consuming: Wesbank & Absa.
What is the biggest challenge facing Debt Counsellors at the moment?
A small number of unethical Debt Counsellors are sadly giving the industry a bad name. Also, some credit providers are very difficult to work with and do not act in the best interest of the consumer.
What is the biggest challenge facing your consumers at the moment?
A lack of education about Debt Counselling and common misconceptions of the process. There is also a general lack of financial literacy within South Africa.
What advice do you have for consumers with debt stress?
Struggling to repay your debts and maintain an acceptable standard of living for you and your family can be a very overwhelming and distressing experience. I fully understand how difficult it can be to take that first step and face the issue. I would strongly encourage anyone dealing with a debt problem to seek help from a registered, professional Debt Counsellor. A good Debt Counsellor will analyse your individual circumstances; assess and explain all options which are available to you in a clear manner; and provide you with a tailored solution which meets your needs. At Blue Star Consultants we always offer an obligation-free assessment and our services are strictly confidential.
What advice do you have for consumers already under debt review?
Your primary goal should be to maintain your debt review arrangement and ensure that you honour the agreed upon (reduced) monthly repayments. Keep your Debt Counsellor up to date with your finances and inform him/her if any of your circumstances change. A good Debt Counsellor is always available to his/her clients, even if just for a quick catch up or chat.
Blue Star Consultants
Tel: 021 205 1663
WhatsApp: 079 868 3323