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institutionReviews of the Best Credit Repair Services of 2017

We have researched credit repair for years. Our goal is to provide you with updated and unbiased reviews of the best credit repair companies around. We did all the work for you. We learned what each company has to offer as we reviewed different aspects of their business. 

Our Top Credit Repair Service Picks

The Best Companies Usually Offer:

Years of Experience

Available in multiple states

Expert Credit Counseling

Free consultation

Compare Fees

Monthly Fee $79.95 $59 $59 $99.95 $98 $69 $49-$79 $49-$69 Range varies Range varies
Setup Cost Free $19 $59 Free Free $79 $69-$99 $89 Range varies $59.95
Discount for Couples $50 $40 32% $100 $29 20% $25-$30 20% $100 40%
No Credit Report Fee (Pull) $14.99 $1.99
Money-back guaranteed
No Extra Fees
Monthly Fee $79.95 $59 $59 $99.95 $98
Setup Cost Free $19 $59 Free Free
Discount for Couples $50 $40 32% $100 $29
No Credit Report Fee (Pull) $14.99
Money-back guaranteed
No Extra Fees
Monthly Fee $69 $49-$79 $49-$69 Range varies Range varies
Setup Cost $79 $69-$99 $89 Range varies $59.95
Discount for Couples 20% $25-$30 20% $100 40%
No Credit Report Fee (Pull) $1.99
Money-back guaranteed
No Extra Fees
Monthly Fee $79.95 $59
Setup Cost Free $19
Discount for Couples $50 $40
No Credit Report Fee (Pull)
Money-back guaranteed
No Extra Fees
Monthly Fee $59 $99.95
Setup Cost $59 Free
Discount for Couples 32% $100
No Credit Report Fee (Pull) $14.99
Money-back guaranteed
No Extra Fees
Monthly Fee $98 $69
Setup Cost Free $79
Discount for Couples $29 20%
No Credit Report Fee (Pull)
Money-back guaranteed
No Extra Fees
Monthly Fee $49-$79 $49-$69
Setup Cost $69-$99 $89
Discount for Couples $25-$30 20%
No Credit Report Fee (Pull) $1.99
Money-back guaranteed
No Extra Fees
Monthly Fee Range varies Range varies
Setup Cost Range varies $59.95
Discount for Couples $100 40%
No Credit Report Fee (Pull)
Money-back guaranteed
No Extra Fees
Credit Score

Improving Your Credit Score

Top credit repair companies help you through credit coaching, allowing your newfound knowledge to help improve your credit score. You get free credit reports, so you can identify and target the issues you have.

Customer Service Review

Our Customer Service Rating 80 80 85 90 100 80 80 90 85 80
Customer Resources Rating 100 95 85 90 95 50 75 50 60 50
Working with Team or Rep Team Both Both Team Both Rep Rep Rep Both Rep
Our Customer Service Rating 80 80 85 90 100
Customer Resources Rating 100 95 85 90 95
Working with Team or Rep Team Both Both Team Both
Our Customer Service Rating 80 80 90 85 80
Customer Resources Rating 50 75 50 60 50
Working with Team or Rep Rep Rep Rep Both Rep
Our Customer Service Rating 80 80
Customer Resources Rating 100 95
Working with Team or Rep Team Both
Our Customer Service Rating 85 90
Customer Resources Rating 85 90
Working with Team or Rep Both Team
Our Customer Service Rating 100 80
Customer Resources Rating 95 50
Working with Team or Rep Both Rep
Our Customer Service Rating 80 90
Customer Resources Rating 75 50
Working with Team or Rep Rep Rep
Our Customer Service Rating 85 80
Customer Resources Rating 60 50
Working with Team or Rep Both Rep

Staying on Top of Your Credit Score

The best credit repair companies use various tools available on their website in order to track your credit score. These tools shows both positive and negative changes so you can improve your score.

Program Information

Days before Results(average) 45 60 30 30-60 30-45 30-45 45-60 30-45 30-45 45-60
No Contracts Required
Contacts Original Creditors
Offers Pay for Delete Negotiation
Monthly Monitoring of Credit
Identity Theft Protection
Days before Results(average) 45 60 30 30-60 30-45
No Contracts Required
Contacts Original Creditors
Offers Pay for Delete Negotiation
Monthly Monitoring of Credit
Identity Theft Protection
Days before Results(average) 30-45 45-60 30-45 30-45 45-60
No Contracts Required
Contacts Original Creditors
Offers Pay for Delete Negotiation
Monthly Monitoring of Credit
Identity Theft Protection
Days before Results(average) 45 60
No Contracts Required
Contacts Original Creditors
Offers Pay for Delete Negotiation
Monthly Monitoring of Credit
Identity Theft Protection

 

Days before Results(average) 30 30-60
No Contracts Required
Contacts Original Creditors
Offers Pay for Delete Negotiation
Monthly Monitoring of Credit
Identity Theft Protection
Days before Results(average) 30-45 30-45
No Contracts Required
Contacts Original Creditors
Offers Pay for Delete Negotiation
Monthly Monitoring of Credit
Identity Theft Protection
Days before Results(average) 45-60 30-45
No Contracts Required
Contacts Original Creditors
Offers Pay for Delete Negotiation
Monthly Monitoring of Credit
Identity Theft Protection
Days before Results(average) 30-45 45-60
No Contracts Required
Contacts Original Creditors
Offers Pay for Delete Negotiation
Monthly Monitoring of Credit
Identity Theft Protection

Trusted Experience

Many of the best credit repair companies have been around for many years. Their industry experience along with a proven track record  shows why they are part of our top credit repair service picks.

Review of Various Credit Repair Services


Why Should You Use a Credit Repair Company?

Life often presents us with events that may negatively affect credit. This includes late payments, bills sent to collection, various loan applications, and even identity theft which can be one of the most devastating things to happen to someone. In addition, there may even be times when there are items incorrectly added to your credit report without you even knowing, which means your credit score may be unfairly lower than it should be. If you’re in a situation where you want to repair your credit, a company that presents credit repair services can help you update your report and correct those mistakes. The credit repair company will help you go through your credit report so you can detect anything and everything that shouldn’t be there, then help you dispute them with the three national credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.

However, if these dings on your report are correct and valid, it’s most likely that the credit repair company cannot remove them. In addition, if a disputed item that has been removed from your report is later proven to be valid by either your creditors or credit bureaus, then it can be placed back on your report and your creditors don’t even need to notify you first.

In this page we explain what you should know about credit repair programs, including what to look out for and what other options are available to you. We also have information on the site where you can learn more about credit repair and credit and debt management.

Below we explain what you should know about credit repair programs, what to look out for and what other options you have. You can also learn more about credit repair in our articles on credit and debt management.

A Few Frank Warnings About Credit Repair

We know that the credit repair industry often gets a bad reputation, thanks to many scammers who have swindled innocent people who only wanted to improve their credit and their lives. We have researched various credit repair companies, and have selected the best services we find to be both legitimate and effective. Keep in mind, though, that this industry in general is a risky one to work with, so you should keep the following warnings in mind when choosing a credit repair company:

Technically, You Can Repair Your Credit Yourself

There will be companies that will tell you otherwise, but know that you technically do not need to hire a company to help you dispute negative items in your credit report. Contrary to popular belief, credit repair services don’t perform magic – they don’t have any special formula that makes them any more effective than you when it comes to disputing items with the credit bureaus. You are allowed to dispute items on your credit report which you feel are either inaccurate or falsified, and bureaus are legally required to respond to you within 30 days. This is all for free, allowing you to avoid all the costs you could have spent on credit repair services. However, this may be both stressful and possibly inaccurate, especially if you do not have a strong financial background. As such, you can approach credit repair services to help you dispute these items effectively.

Only Inaccurate Items May Be Removed from Your Report

Another thing you should look out for is when a credit repair company claims they can improve your credit no matter what. That’s not entirely true, as only inaccurate items can be removed from your credit report. Any other item that negatively impacts your score, if valid, should stay there. In any case, bureaus and creditors can only remove items that are inaccurate or cannot be proven. For example, you have a few late payments listed on your report, but you have receipts proving you paid them on time. Then, these items can be removed from your credit report. Inversely, if you paid all your bills past their due dates, regardless what several credit repair companies claim they can do, this information should and will remain on your credit report.

Beware of the Jamming Technique

You should be careful of the “jamming” technique. Jamming is when there are too many items disputed with all the credit bureaus at the same time. While it’s a technique some credit repair companies swear by, it only acts as a temporary solution that doesn’t really do anything, and this is why. Because credit bureaus, by law, are required to respond to disputes in 30 days or less, many items from your credit report may be removed because the bureaus can’t prove them in the allotted time frame. However, this isn’t a permanent solution, because if creditors and the credit bureaus eventually prove that these items are in fact accurate, then these items are added back to your credit report after the fact. You are then back to square one.

There are a few credit repair companies listed in our top 10 that claim to dispute all of your items at once, which is great if you have been a victim of identity theft, because all the items you need to dispute in your report are legitimate. So, if you don’t have that many items to dispute and you are 100% sure these are all either inaccurate or fraudulent, such companies would work to your advantage. If not, then these charges can (and usually do) reappear on your credit report after the 30-day period. For people with a large number of items on their report who believe they all have legitimate reasons, then we recommend finding a credit repair services that dispute these items in batches, as you will get a more permanent fix instead of a temporary one that will end up revoked.

How Credit Repair Works & What You Should Know

Credit repair works by finding errors on your credit report and attempting to fix them. These companies can help dispute anything a creditor or bureau can’t verify as legitimate through legal paperwork, including signed receipts and other proof that show certain hits to your credit score were invalid.

Many credit repair companies work only to dispute your claims with the credit bureaus, which means your creditors may have the chance to add those hits back to your file later, possibly without your knowledge. Other services, like MSI Credit, work with both major bureaus and your creditors so incorrect info on your credit record can be removed permanently.

Many credit repair companies work only with the credit bureaus to dispute your claims, which may mean that your creditors can add the hit back to your file later (without your knowledge); other services, such as MSI Credit, work with the major bureaus and your creditors to help permanently remove dings from your credit record. When evaluating credit repair services, below are some additional things to keep in mind:

Questions You Should Ask During Your Free Consultation

Most credit repair companies offer free consultation (all of the services on our review offer it). If you choose to go with one, make sure you talk to your representative regarding which plan they have that would work best for your situation. Ask them about what items need to be disputed, how creditors and bureaus have to prove their validity, what fees you have to pay, and how long the process may take. Remember that the money and time you spend in credit repair would vary depending on your situation and the company you choose to work with.

Some companies such as 180 Credit Solutions dispute all your items in one go, so you only work with them for a short time. This saves you time and money, but remember that disputing too many items at once could flag the bureaus and make you end up with fewer items removed from your report, or the items removed only temporarily. If you have a lot of items, find a program that does this in batches instead.

How Long Does It Take to Repair Your Credit?

Many companies out there claim to repair credit fast, but most of the ones we reviewed here offer programs that last anywhere between three to nine months, on average. And, with the exception of two companies (Park View Credit and 180 Credit Solutions), the credit repair services on our top 10 list did not require a contract so you are allowed to cancel at any time.

Generally speaking, it takes around 30-45 days before you see results from your credit repair. Creditors and bureaus are legally required to respond to disputes no more than 30 days since you filed it.

Choose a Company That Disputes the Right Number of Items for You

On average, a credit repair service will dispute 5 items per credit bureau at a time, for a total of 15 items. Depending on your credit situation, choose a credit repair company that disputes the right number of items you feel reasonable for your situation, but always bear in mind that filing a large number of disputes at once may do more harm than good.

How Much Does Credit Repair Cost?

Credit repair companies often impose extra costs like monthly fees, setup fees, and sometimes even fees for pulling your credit report. On average, the companies we reviewed charge anywhere from $49 to $99.

All the companies in our review charge a setup fee, which covers things like basic paperwork, setting up a plan, and at times, the cost of pulling your credit report. We found that some charge a separate fee for it while others use a free third party service or require you to do that yourself.

All services in our review offers a discount if you sign up with a friend. Depending on the company, these savings may be a discount on monthly fees, waived setup fees, or some other discount.

Inquire About Having a Money-Back Guarantee

Legally speaking, credit repair companies cannot promise to increase your credit score. However, many companies in our list offer great money-back offers, which are different from legal guarantees.

In checking companies’ money-back guarantees, we found that most companies refund your money for the month you did not experience an improvement to your credit score, which protect you rather than bait you in with promises they can’t actually keep. While a company cannot absolutely guarantee results, you will at least have some peace of mind knowing you get some of your money back if it doesn’t work out. One of the companies, MSI Credit Solutions, even guarantees at least 50 points increased or your money back!

Other Credit-Improvement Options

We understand that credit repair is a risky move, because you have no guarantee that your credit score will improve. Even money-back guarantees are limited. You may want to check out other options like debt management or credit counseling in improving your credit instead of using credit repair companies, as these options can help you manage credit and get rid of debt by giving you pertinent information and tools. Here is a list of these services, which include many things that help you develop good financial habits and even tackle debt yourself:

Credit Counseling: A credit counseling service helps educate people on how to repair credit and develop good financial habits, which are essentially the starting point for many such companies. However, most of them also offer debt management, especially if your situation and credit score are in need of serious help. However, you should also be aware that there are many scammers in this industry! Before paying for credit counseling, it’s highly recommended that you do some research first just to be sure this service you chose is legitimate. One red flag you should look out for is when a service pushes you into a debt-management plan right away without teaching you first how to improve credit in the first place.

Debt-Management Programs: These services reach out to your creditors to negotiate with them, to help secure lower interest rates and fees, lessen or avoid collections, and negotiate due dates. Sometimes, they even offer you debt consolidation services or debt settlement. This is when a company tries to negotiate with your creditors can also be part of debt management, but debt management accomplishes more than debt settlement can and is often considered more legitimate.

What We Evaluated and Discovered in Credit Repair

While conducting our reviews, we looked for credit repair services that offer money-back guarantees. This feature shows that a company is willing to stand behind its service, enough that they’re risking giving back money if what they promised doesn’t work out. We also looked at and ranked companies which offer great features like working with both creditors and major credit bureaus, as well as offering pay for delete negotiations.

In addition to getting information on how much each company charges, what services they offer, and how long it takes for their services to work, our list and ranking also reflects how great their customer service works and the quality of the educational materials they give to customers. Here is more information on what we have discovered with each service and how each company got evaluated:

Customer Service Score

Because you will work with your representative about a very personal, sensitive topic, you want to get amazing customer service. We’ve developed a customer service “score” for each company in our list, based on how their representatives treated us during phone and email interactions. This scoring grade also reflects how transparent a company is about their services as well as the consistency of information we received over multiple phone calls.

Customer service scores are diverse because we have received diverse experiences. We found that MSI Credit Solutions was especially helpful, earning them the highest customer service score in our review. They were extremely helpful and very transparent about their services and limitations.

Education Score

Giving knowledge to consumers is a vital part of credit repair – the more you know about finances and credit, the better. Thus, we created an education score based on available information and materials on each company’s website.

This education score reflects not just the quantity (number of topics available) but also the quality (usefulness of supplemental education materials), as well as the usefulness of calculators, if available. Honestly speaking, many of the companies in our list did not score high in education, but it’s mainly because it’s not really the primary goal of these companies in the first place. However, it is still an important element regardless, as the more you learn about credit in finances then the more in control you will be of your future financial standing.

Other Criteria: Pricing & Program Features

When it comes to evaluating credit repair companies, it’s important to look at the overall cost of each service. During our assessments, we considered this but also took note that price does not automatically mean value. However, it’s helpful to know what you can expect, more or less, for a certain amount of money.

In our cost evaluation, we included couples discounts – better companies offer discounted monthly fees which in the long run save you the most compared to the one-time discounts offered by other companies. From our lineup, we think Park View Credit’s offer of 40% discount on your partner’s or spouse’s fee is the best – they offer a lump sum rather than monthly payments.

We also considered which companies offer program features, including identity theft protection, pay-for-delete negotiations, and monthly credit monitoring. Some of the companies in our list offer these services, and many also offer to work with both your creditors and the top 3 bureaus. This is especially helpful in removing inaccurate and fraudulent information from your report permanently.

Our Verdict & Recommendations

As previously mentioned, going with a credit repair company does not guarantee improved credit as it all depends how legitimate these credit hits on your reports are. The credit repair industry is helpful, but often in limited situations. Other than going through this article, we also recommend you read the review for each credit repair company in our lineup so you know the pros and cons of each, and you get a general view and expectations. The companies on our list all offer high-value services, amazing features, and top scores in our ranking.