How one Nashville institution is helping those manage debt for free

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Posted at 3:40 PM, Mar 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-17 09:02:05-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Sam Williams encounters Nashvillians struggling with their finances every day.

Working at the United Way's Financial Empowerment Center, Williams understands the stress and weight money can carry, especially when it narrows down to credit scores and debt.

"A lot of our clients are struggling financially, but also in some ways, utilizing this moment to do some financial things," Williams said.

With inflation dipping into wallets and gas prices spiking at the gas pump, Williams said it's hard to manage daily budgets, but the center, a partnership with the Mayor's Office, can help those struggling. And not to mention, it's free.

"For example, we reduced a lot of debt with clients last year and what our counselors feel is why is the student debt moratorium," Williams said. "People were able to use some of that to pay down higher-interest debt, paying down some credit cards, some other loans or putting it toward a better car for transportation to work."

Through May 1, the federal student loan moratorium allows people to put off those debt payments, which is one reason financial counselors urge those with loans to save and learn to keep a good credit score.

"What the credit report system is is if businesses can trust you," Williams said. "And it's over the last two years typically. What they're looking at is have you been paying your bills on time."

Counseling appointments are free, and there is no income requirement. To make an appointment call 615-748-3620 or go to