The Secret World of Debt Collection – A SavvyReview

The Secret World of Debt CollectorsHave you ever wondered how you can beat debt collectors at their own game? If so, The Secret World of Debt Collection by Mike Cardoza, Esq. might just be the book for you. In a short 58 pages – which makes it more like a brochure vice a book – Mr. Cardoza lays out a detailed roadmap to do just that.

As noted in his biography, Mr. Cardoza trained as a trial attorney in the U.S. Marine Corps and has tried numerous cases in federal and state courtrooms. He is a graduate of UCLA with a degree in Business Economics and also of the Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C. Additionally, he is a veteran of the war in Iraq and continues to serve his country as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve.

I should note that the first thought that crossed my mind when the book arrived from the publicist and I considered the subject matter, is that individuals (and families) would be so much better off if they were more selective in choosing their loan providers and to whatever extent they did carry debt, made prompt payments; therefore, never needing to know the best way to navigate the treacherous waters when dealing with debt collectors. Unfortunately, that is not the case for far too many people, which makes the information contained within this book a necessity for some.

Should you find yourself in such a place, the first step in extricating yourself from the morass of debt collection is to understand the problem. Mr. Cardoza uses clear and entertaining language to help the reader understand the process and the players involved in today’s Debt Collection Industry.

Mr. Cardoza informs the reader that there are federal and state laws which describe what debt collectors may do, and perhaps more importantly, what they may not do in the course of dealing with debtors. Among the interesting tidbits in the book is that companies often pay pennies on the dollar for the right to collect a debt and have every incentive to collect as much – as quickly and inexpensively – as possible.

An interesting style employed by Mr. Cardoza is to place highlighted thoughts/observations/key facts throughout the book. A couple of my favorites:

The Business of Family - Read More“I want you to know what millions of Americans don’t know because the financial industry exerts huge effort to make you think otherwise.”

“The wizard behind the screen is a lazy fat man who roars between belches. He scares many into paying and cares little about the rest.”

At no point does Mr. Cardoza suggest that individuals not pay legally accrued debt; however, he strongly advocates that those involved with debt collectors know the rules to the game they are now playing. As with most things, knowledge begets power.

Overall, I would recommend the book for those that find themselves in the stress inducing world of debt collection. However, I do have one disappointment, and that is the price for the paperback version. At $16.95, the price strikes me as a little steep. Fortunately however, the Kindle version is a very reasonable $3.99 and better yet, Amazon Prime members can borrow for free via the Kindle Owner’s Lending Library.

As alluded to, The Secret World of Debt Collection is available at Amazon.

Blogger-in-Chief here at RetirementSavvy and author of Sin City Greed, Cream City Hustle and RENDEZVOUS WITH RETIREMENT: A Guide to Getting Fiscally Fit.


  1. I’ve settled debt for less than what was owed. The collector was willing to settle for a lot less with a lump sum payment opposed to making payment arrangements. I do not know how it impacted my credit score but it did read the same on my credit reports. (“Settled for less than owed”) I’m not sure of the time it remained, eventually it did drop off.

    • I believe the fact that an account is ‘settled’ and closed is a positive with respect to a credit score.

  2. I’ve been lucky enough to stay out of debt collectors crosshairs. I remember something about you can often negotiate the debt petty far down. Knowledge is very powerful in debt collection and if your owe debt collectors, knowing the laws, tips and tricks will help you a lot to get that debt noose around your neck off.

    • With respect to negotiating the debt down, you are correct, Kyle. I have been involved in a couple of situations where I was helping family members clean up their credit reports and often that involves addressing old debt and debt collectors. In both cases I was able to help them negotiate significantly lesser amounts – about 40% – after some back and forth with the debt collectors. At the end of the day, by the time someone is dealing with a debt collector, they should understand that the debt collector has already purchased that debt for a given amount. Ultimately, they will settle for getting something vice nothing. It is all about understanding where your leverage comes in and being willing to engage in a little back and forth. Thanks for stopping by and kicking off the conversation, my friend.

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