14 common misconceptions about debt recovery
The television guide seems to be full of programmes about bailiffs, debt collectors and sheriffs collecting what’s owed to their clients, but there’s a lot of dramatisation which probably makes debt recovery services look a lot more terrifying than they really are.
We’ve taken the time to dispel some of the more common myths about debt recovery services:
Myth 1: Debt collectors are scary people who knock on doors and threaten to take goods away
The only people with authority to remove property are County Court Bailiffs and High Court Enforcement Officers. They have legal powers to do this – debt collectors don’t. Debt collectors reach out to debtors by email, phone or letter, and communicate calmly and civilly.
Myth 2: Debt collection companies will demand large fees from me.
A reputable collection agency will not ask for huge amounts of money up front. While there are some cowboy outfits who give the industry a bad name by demanding payments for membership and handling fees, First Capitol, for example, is not one of those. Our commission is highly competitive, and can be adjusted to suit your needs. We offer a ‘No win’ basis for your peace of mind, as well.
Myth 3: I’m better off hiring a solicitor.
Sure, you can hire a solicitor right away, but they don’t have the specialist knowledge of a collection company. A solicitor is an option to consider further down the line, in the unlikely event that a debt collection company can’t recover the money for you.
Myth 4: There’s nothing I could have done to prevent this.
Due diligence is more important than ever, and First Capitol can help out with that. Our company vetting service allows you to find out more about that organisation you’re about to start working with. Our report will give you the confidence to make a decision about who you extend credit to.
Myth 5: My debtor is outside the UK – I’ll never recover that money.
Your money may have gone outside the UK, but reputable collection companies like First Capitol have built up a wide range of contacts across the world, who will work with us to ensure that the money you’re owed comes back to you.
Myth 6: I’m only a small company – debt collectors won’t be interested.
Decent debt collectors want to help everyone reclaim what they’re owed, whether you’re a single freelancer working from home, or a huge corporation with thousands of staff. We’re affordable and experienced.
Myth 7: Using debt collectors will make my customers view me negatively.
Because we’re professionals, with sensitive and well trained staff, we’d never treat your customers badly. We want to get them on board, and help find a way to repay their debt to you, and we know that building mutual respect and a working relationship is the best way to do this.
Myth 8: I’ll never see that disappeared debtor again.
You may not have the time to locate your debtors, but we make it our business to find where they’ve gone to. We’ve got specialist tracing staff, who have access to a library of resources which are sure to bring in the result you need.
Myth 9: Collection agencies only work standard office hours.
At First Capitol, we’re open six days a week. We open at 9am, and close at 8pm during the week, and 6pm on Saturdays. These extra opening hours give us more time to help locate and contact debtors, and answer your queries even outside of normal office hours.
Myth 10: People who owe me money can be sent to prison.
Not making repayments to a company isn’t actually a criminal offence. The only debts which carry a potential prison sentence for non payments are council tax, magistrates’ fines, or license payments.
Myth 11: You wouldn’t be interested in helping my industry.
These days, debt collection services are called upon by businesses you wouldn’t think would need our help. Funeral directors, dentists, nurseries, care homes and even PPI companies have been making use of the specialist services offered by external collection agencies.
Myth 12: It’s too hard to instruct a collection agency.
We can provide as much or as little support as you need. Just fill in the form on our website, and we’ll call you back to get all the details.
Myth 13: It’s difficult for debtors to make payments to a collection company.
As long as your debtor has a credit or debit card, they can make secure payments on our website, or call our office.
Myth 14: Debt collection is a last resort solution.
The sooner you get in touch with a company which specialises in collection, the easier it is to resolve the problem. Something which starts off as a small problem can soon escalate if not dealt with, and cause real problems for your company, particularly if your debtor is already short of money. Taking early action shows a debtor you’re serious about credit control.
Statistics show that 56% of UK businesses declared over 1% of turnover to be uncollectable, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Speak to First Capitol today and make sure you get every penny you’ve earned.