Life After Debt: The Hidden Benefits Of Bankruptcy

Relief from debt stress may be the only thing people focus on when they file a Bankruptcy. But for most households dealing with the overwhelm and hopelessness of long-term money problems, that's only the beginning. Bankruptcy has numerous peripheral benefits, which, once the dust settles and the debts are gone, usually turn out to be the most life-changing of all. Looking past the fear of judgement, of hurting their credit of admitting defeat, many often wonder why they didn't contact a Licensed Insolvency Trustee sooner.

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You'll Appreciate the Value of a Dollar

Prior to filing Bankruptcy, people with significant credit card debt can rarely explain what they purchased or how they spent their monthly income. Many admit to losing touch with how much money was going out the door every month. One of mandates of a bankrupt individual is reporting monthly income and expenses to the trustee. After tracking their spending each month for several months, most can't believe how they treated their money before the Bankruptcy. They think back to how often they dined out, bought name brand everything and ignored the cost of simple things like groceries. This dismissive handling of money is now a thing of the past, as most vow to renounce the damaging spending habits that caused their debt. Now they are living a cash only life. Every dollar has a purpose. No more mindless spending. False necessities like name brands are now unnecessary expenditures – replaced by less expensive and often better-quality alternatives. Despite being in Bankruptcy, people often realize they can save money for the first time in years; largely because they shift their energy toward finding creative ways to cut costs, rather than desperately trying to juggle debts.

You'll Have More Family Time

Life is so busy these days. The number of activities, appointments and obligations crammed into one day pressures parents to keep the family in order, schedules organized and finances in check at the same time. With so much on the go, grabbing dinner on the way home or to the next activity might become a regular habit. When you're tired, hungry and running out of time, the quick convenience of fast food may seem like a solution – even if it racks up the credit card or puts a dent in your grocery budget. But when someone files a Bankruptcy and must watch every dollar, different habits begin to emerge. Minimizing trips to the grocery store, weekly meal planning and shopping lists become essential. It forces them to grab a calendar and plan which meals they can make and eat together as a family. It also allows them to include their children in the meal prepping process – teaching them basic skills that will benefit them for a lifetime. Or, if the children have homework, setting them up near the kitchen allows parents to prepare dinner while still being able to help and stay involved. Sitting down and eating as a family – instead of gobbling through fast food in front of the tv or driving down the road – allows for meaningful conversation and checking in with each other. This simple routine can increase the quality of family time and bring stability to a household budget.

You'll Communicate Better

Overwhelming debt causes major rifts in relationships. The debt wall looms so large, it's hard to imagine any way around it. Couples stop planning for the future, start blaming one another and the only thing they can agree on is they can't deal with the debt load anymore. Couples who meet with us are seldom on the same page about money management, which is usually indicative of poor communication. However, being in agreement to file a Bankruptcy is a critical first step to improving financial communication. With the help of counselling sessions, couples learn what they really want to achieve financially – both in terms of short-term goals like establishing an emergency fund, and long-term goals like rebuilding credit to purchase a home. Once they're on the same page, monthly money management becomes a necessary conversation they want to have. They come to understand talking about finances is the antidote to unnecessary debt and the green light to achieving their goals.   Interestingly, with the weight of the debt lifted, couples also feel freer to talk about other life goals.

You'll Gain Hope

There is light at the end of the debt tunnel. Cliché as it may sound, when a person feels overwhelmed by money problems, shame and guilt can narrow their world so much all they see is darkness on the horizon. And though they may initially equate Bankruptcy with financial rock bottom, it usually offers the first spark of light they've seen in months – maybe years – as well as a first step toward a completely different life. It's easy for us to tell you everything will be okay. That the debts can go away, and you can rebuild you life. But our words need time to sink in and you need to see for yourself where the path leads and how it will help you reach your desired destination.   We often see incredible transformations in people by the end of their Free Confidential Consultation. They sit straighter. They smile. Their body language is open and ready. They already feel relief. And that tiny speck of light gets bigger and brighter every day from that point forward.

Experience the Benefits

Don't let outdated stigmas crowd out the positives that can come from Bankruptcy. When our clients share the specific changes they've made and how those have positively impacted their lives, we know the process has done its job – and so have we. If unmanageable debt has narrowed your world and has you feeling overwhelmed, consider scheduling a Free Confidential Consultation with a Licensed Insolvency Trustee today. During this no obligation initial meeting you'll have the opportunity to review your entire financial situation, discuss your challenges and goals and discover options to eliminate your debt for good. These could include Life-Changing Debt Solutions, such as Bankruptcy or a Consumer Proposal, which halt current and future collections actions and could have you become debt free within nine months of your initial filing. They may also be able to offer referrals to other services, provide helpful tools to manage your personal finances and advice to improve your money management skills. Regardless of your situation and goals, a Licensed Insolvency Trustee will ensure you understand all your options and will help you make the best decision to achieve the financial fresh start you deserve. Based out of Vancouver, Lana Gilbertson is a Licensed Insolvency Trustee and Senior Vice President at MNP LTD. To learn more about how MNP Debt can help, contact our local office at 310.DEBT (310.3328) or toll-free at 1.877.363.3437. Based out of Courtenay, Selina Jacobson is an Assistant Estate Manager and Registered Insolvency Counsellor at MNP LTD. To learn more about how MNP Debt can help, contact our local office at 1.877.363.3437 or toll-free at 310.DEBT (310.3328).