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acis21

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Bankruptcy or debt consolidation. Which would be better in the long run?
I am trying to clean up my credit. I have 8 open collection accounts and I'm living paycheck to paycheck. My score is in the 400's. Would I be better off filing for bankruptcy and starting fresh?

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Bankruptcy will kill your credit for the next ten years and you have to start rebuilding from the beginning, and there are some things that cannot be discharged in bankruptcy.  With your credit score, you will not be able to get any consolidation loans or, if you did, the interest rate would be astronomically high. I suggest you read the articles on this site for a very helpful credit education and also do a search for Dave Ramsey's site to get some sensible ideas on how to clear up your debts.  That would help the best.

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I nearly always advise against bankruptcy, with one exception: If any single debt is for a large enough dollar amount AND you own your own home, you might be better off with a bankruptcy rather than being sued and forced to sell your home. Other than that scenario, it makes zero sense to file for bankruptcy. A few charge-offs or collection accounts will do less damage to your score and it will be there for a shorter amount of time. 
Also, many credit applications will ask if you have EVER filed for bankruptcy. You don't want to have to say yes.

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