Staff Writer

Bill Fay

Bill “No Pay” Fay has lived a meager financial existence his entire life. He started writing/bragging about it in 2012, helping birth Debt.org into existence as the site’s original “Frugal Man.” Prior to that, he spent more than 30 years covering the high finance world of college and professional sports for major publications, including the Associated Press, New York Times and Sports Illustrated. His interest in sports has waned some, but he is as passionate as ever about not reaching for his wallet. Bill can be reached at [email protected].

Couple discussing whether or not they should use a personal loan to pay off credit cards

Should You Use Personal Loan to Pay Off Credit Cards?

By Bill Fay | December 14, 2022

A rare silver lining to the Covid pandemic was Americans managed to pay down billions of dollars in credit card debt. Those days have screeched to a halt. Credit card…

Covered bridge in rural Indiana

Debt Relief Options in Indiana

By Bill Fay | December 14, 2022

Debt Relief Programs in Indiana There are banks, credit unions, online lenders and debt-relief companies (for profit and nonprofit) in Indiana that specialize in helping consumers pay off credit card debt.…

Wisconsin state capitol building

Debt Relief Options in Wisconsin

By Bill Fay | December 12, 2022

Debt Relief Programs in Wisconsin Wisconsin residents struggling to pay off debt can find assistance programs at banks, credit unions, online lenders, and for profit and nonprofit debt relief companies.…

Washington mountain view

Debt Relief Options in Washington

By Bill Fay | November 3, 2022

Debt Relief Programs in Washington There are a number of resources available for residents of the Evergreen State who find  themselves in financial peril. Banks, credit unions, online lenders, for…

Smoky mountains in Tennessee

Debt Relief Options in Tennessee

By Bill Fay | October 26, 2022

Debt Relief Programs in Tennessee Tennessee has a number of companies that specialize in helping consumers pay off credit card debt including banks, credit unions, online lenders, and both for…

A lake in Colorado with mountains in the background

Debt Relief Options in Colorado

By Bill Fay | September 22, 2022

Debt Relief Programs in Colorado Colorado has a number of companies that specialize in helping consumers pay off credit card debt including banks, credit unions, online lenders, and both for…

Senior couple filing the paperwork for banruptcy

Senior Citizens & Bankruptcy

By Bill Fay | June 29, 2022

Bankruptcy is a legal proceeding that could provide relief when a person can’t repay debts. Consider bankruptcy a legal life preserver for those drowning in debt. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is…

Skyline view of Baltimore, Maryland from the harbor

Debt Relief Options in Maryland

By Bill Fay | April 8, 2022

Debt Relief Programs in Maryland Debt relief in Maryland can come from several entities, among them, banks, credit unions, credit counseling agencies (nonprofit and for-profit), and online lenders. The goal:…

Desert and cactus scene in Arizona

Debt Relief Options in Arizona

By Bill Fay | April 8, 2022

Debt Relief Programs in Arizona In Arizona, banks, credit unions, credit counseling agencies (nonprofit and for-profit), and online lenders can help consumers find solutions or relief to debt. Each offers…

Blue Ridge mountain range in North Carolina

Debt Relief Options in North Carolina

By Bill Fay | March 24, 2022

Debt Relief Programs in North Carolina If you need debt relief in North Carolina, banks, credit unions, credit counseling agencies (nonprofit and for-profit), and online lenders can help consumers pay…

Georgia peach on a tree

Debt Relief Options in Georgia

By Bill Fay | March 23, 2022

Debt Relief Programs in Georgia Relief for debt can be found in Georgia, with several options and/or programs addressing what can be burdensome problem. Credit counseling agencies (nonprofit and for-profit),…

Definition of exempt in the dictionary

Bankruptcy Exemptions

By Bill Fay | February 28, 2022

Bankruptcy is a scary word. You might think the worst when you hear, “He’s bankrupt.” You might think, “She’ll be penniless.” You might think he or she will have to…

Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition dismissed

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Dismissal

By Bill Fay | October 1, 2021

Bankruptcy World has two distinctly different “Dis-lands.” One, “Dis-charged,” is the magnificent, joyful, cherished holy grail of bankruptcy outcomes. Every bankrupt wants to get through the Discharged finish line —…

Woman holding nonprofit sign

Nonprofit Debt Settlement

By Bill Fay | September 21, 2021

Would you be able to pay off your credit card debt, if creditors forgive 40% to 50% of your debt? And agreed to those numbers up front without negotiating? And…

Analyzing credit card bills before filing bankruptcy

Filing Bankruptcy for Credit Card Debt

By Bill Fay | August 11, 2021

Bankruptcy is meant to give consumers drowning in debt a second chance, which a lot of people who overspent heavily using credit cards,  think they need. But if you look…

Man in suit choosing between chapter 7 and chapter 11 bankruptcy

Chapter 7 vs. Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

By Bill Fay | August 4, 2021

This is the story for anyone who thinks a bankruptcy is a bankruptcy is a bankruptcy. Not so. In fact, bankruptcies are like Nike sneakers: They come in a variety…

Facebook homepage

Can Debt Collectors Track You Down on Facebook?

By Bill Fay | June 17, 2021

Imagine logging on to Facebook and finding a new message in your inbox. It’s not from a family member or an old friend. Instead, it’s a debt collector asking why…

Credit report score

Breaking Down Your FICO Score

By Bill Fay | June 17, 2021

You may know your credit score, but understanding how you are graded can be a tool to help you raise your score in the future, and avoid repeating the mistakes…

Desktop computer showing a credit score over 800

How Do I Get My Credit Score up to 800?

By Bill Fay | June 17, 2021

You don’t have to be a millionaire to know what achieving that financial ranking means. Being a millionaire means you have crossed a huge economic threshold. Doors open. Opportunities are…

Lower Utility Bills This Winter

How to Cut Your Utility Bills This Winter, No Matter Your Heating Fuel

By Bill Fay | June 10, 2021

As the temperature outside drops, your utility bill is on the rise. We get it. It’s cold outside and you want to keep warm and cozy inside, but before you…

Financial Planning Calendar

2018 Financial Planning Calendar

By Bill Fay | November 29, 2017

Would you like to save an extra $1,000 in 2018? Maybe you should eliminate that latte on the way to work. How about earning an extra $3,000? That can easily…

Equifax Data Breach Lady in front of computer screen

What To Do About Equifax Data Breach?

By Bill Fay | October 10, 2017

The recent data breach at Equifax, one of the three major credit reporting bureaus, has created an uncomfortable situation for the more than 145 million American consumers whose personal information…

Poor Credit Report

CFPB’s Deal with Credit Bureaus Could Raise 12 Million Scores

By Bill Fay | April 4, 2017

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which prides itself on being the watchdog for U.S. consumers, has been snarling at America’s three major credit bureaus for a while and finally decided…

Frugal Man Return From Paris

Frugal Man Home From Paris

By Bill Fay | August 11, 2016

The Frugal Man has never in his life bragged about throwing money around, but that 60-year silence on silly spending is over. I just dropped a boatload of money on…

Piggy bank with stethoscope and clip board

FINRA Study Says (Some) Americans’ Financial Health Improving

By Bill Fay | July 20, 2016

American consumers say they are having an easier time paying bills and are feeling much less stress over their financial situation than they were in 2009… unless they happen to…

Interest rates will not budge

Interest Rates Probably Not Budging in 2016

By Bill Fay | July 13, 2016

During Alan Greenspan’s nearly 20-year reign as Chairman of the Federal Reserve, commentators used to look at the heft of the briefcase he carried to meetings to guess whether interest…

CFPB changes rules regarding payday loans

Payday Loans Face Tough Rule Changes from CFPB

By Bill Fay | June 9, 2016

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has proposed new rules aimed at putting more responsibility on payday loan lenders and their crippling triple-digit interest rates. The CFPB proposals would require lenders…

How well are students keeping up with their student loans?

Who’s Paying For Student Loans

By Bill Fay | June 1, 2016

Now that the college graduation parties are over, parents and students can sit down and have a serious talk about who’s going to pay for it. College, that is, not…

American families are having trouble with understanding finance

Financial Literacy a Tough Test for Most Americans

By Bill Fay | May 24, 2016

The latest trends in spending and debt indicate that America already has forgotten any lessons we might have learned when the bubble burst on the U.S. economy in 2008. The…

Eiffel Tower in Paris

Frugal Man Goes To Paris

By Bill Fay | May 4, 2016

If you’re wondering whether a summer vacation is worth it, ask your doctor, not your accountant. Every medical study ever done on the subject concludes that summer vacations – especially…

Auto Sales Slow Because of New Legislation

New Legislation May Slow Record-Breaking Car Sales

By Bill Fay | November 25, 2015

Analysts predict record-setting sales for the automobile industry over the next year, though feuding between government leaders over whether discrimination exists in car financing could slow things down. WardsAuto Dealer…

Save money on Thanksgiving

Excessive Spending Not Necessary At Thanksgiving

By Bill Fay | November 23, 2015

America’s holiday season has begun, which means excessive consumption is not only allowed, it’s encouraged. At least until it’s your turn to pick up the bill. There is no reason…

myRA Account is my retirement account

MyRA Account Starting Point For Retirement Savings

By Bill Fay | November 12, 2015

The United States government is opening the door to retirement savings for the millions of Americans who have nothing invested there, but a word of caution if you go inside:…

Student Cap on Money

Borrowers Get Another Way To Repay Student Loan Debt

By Bill Fay | October 29, 2015

The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) announced it was imposing regulations to prevent colleges from steering students to specific debit and prepaid cards for use with federal grant and loan…

Jar full of coins intended for a 401K savings plan

Employers Up The Ante On 401k Plans

By Bill Fay | October 22, 2015

There is a new twist on the ages old discussion about how much is needed for retirement savings: Employers – not employees! – are taking the initiative. The Vanguard Group,…

Large cost for education

Workers Put Paying For Child’s College Ahead Of Retirement Savings

By Bill Fay | October 20, 2015

American workers have found another escape hatch to avoid contributing to their retirement savings and at least 33 percent of them say they would voluntarily take it. The LIMRA Secure…

Scanning the EMV Card

Walmart Ahead Of Competitors With EMV Cards

By Bill Fay | October 7, 2015

While most retailers in the United States struggle to catch up to the new EMV chip technology for credit cards, Walmart has been ready for nearly a decade. The nation’s…

Millennial holding a sign that declares their love for loan repayment plan

Student Loan Repayment A Benefit Millennials Love

By Bill Fay | September 29, 2015

Companies have a new carrot to dangle in front of college graduates – help repaying student loans – and experts believe it quickly will become the gold standard benefit for…

Debt is Due Now On Paper

CFPB Orders Debt Collection Agencies To Refund Millions

By Bill Fay | September 10, 2015

The 77 million Americans pursued and often harassed by debt collection agencies won a moment of relief when the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) ordered the nation’s two largest debt…

Man Filing Papers For Bankruptcy

3 Reasons To File For Bankruptcy

By Bill Fay | June 22, 2015

There aren’t many words in the English language less understood and more avoided than bankruptcy. “There definitely is a stigma attached to it,” Jeff Badgley said. “When people hear it,…