Selecting a credit repair company can be a time-consuming process. If you don’t know exactly what you are looking for, and your legal rights, you might end up choosing the wrong services for your needs. If you want to improve your poor credit score or to fix any errors in your report, here are the Best Credit Repair companies of 2021 according to Money.
The 4 Best Credit Repair Companies of 2021
What Exactly Do Credit Repair Companies Do?
A credit repair company is an entity that specializes in finding and disputing mistakes on your credit report. In exchange for their services, these companies generally charge a monthly fee ranging from $79 to $120. When your credit score has been improved to your satisfaction, you can discontinue the service.
Best Credit Repair Company Reviews
The companies listed below have a solid reputation, offer reasonable turnarounds, competitive prices, satisfaction guarantees, and a variety of complimentary credit monitoring services, to help you fix your poor or bad credit. Before hiring a credit repair company, make sure you understand what can and can’t be removed from your report, to determine whether this is the best option for you.
Credit Saint Review
BBB Rating: A
Monthly fee: $79.99 – $119.99
Credit Saint offers three credit repair packages: Credit Polish, Credit Remodel, and Clean Slate, which vary in aggressiveness.
Credit Polish package:
Allows you to dispute up to 5 inaccurate items per monthly cycle, including late payments, transactions related to identity thefts, account charge-offs, and debt collections.
Credit Remodel package:
You get everything included in the Credit Polish plan, in addition to 5 more disputes per month, escalated information requests, and disputes for additional items, such as bankruptcies and repossessions.
The Clean Slate package:
The most comprehensive credit repair package, featuring everything that’s offered in its two other plans, plus access to disputing judgments. In addition, you get unlimited disputes each month, which speeds up the credit restoration process.
When you subscribe to Credit Saint, the company assigns a specialized advisory team to monitor your case closely, schedule calls periodically to keep you informed, and answer any questions you may have. You can cancel the company’s services at any time, and there’s a 90-day money-back guarantee if you don’t see any changes in your credit history after three months.
Sky Blue Credit Review
BBB Rating: Not BBB Accredited
Monthly fee: $79 – $119
Sky Blue Credit has a simple pricing model that allows you to take advantage of all its credit repair services for a flat rate of $79 a month, or $119 a month for couples (both married or unmarried partners).
Sky Blue’s credit repair plans include:
An initial analysis of disputable items
Identifying and reviewing potential errors in your report
Dispute 15 negative items per each 35 days cycle
Access to debt negotiation consultants
Credit score assistance and other credit score rebuilding programs
A condition-free 90-day-guarantee
According to the company, each credit repair process takes approximately 6 months to complete and cancellation is allowed at any time without incurring any penalties.
The Credit Pros Review
BBB Rating: A
Monthly fee: $69 – $149
The Credit Pros offers some of the most affordable prices in the industry, with monthly services starting at just $69. The company has 3 different packages available for their clients: :
Money Management plan:
Includes access to updated credit reports every 60 days
Identity theft restoration insurance
Cease and desist letters to creditors
Access to the company’s legal network
Personalized action plans with certified FICO professionals
Prosperity Package and the Success Package:
Include the same features as the Money Management plan
Both packages include discounts on medication and products from affiliate websites, like National Credit Direct.
Each of these plans features other finance tools such as real-time account sync, bill reminder, and a budgeting system service. Although all of these selections offer some sort of complimentary credit monitoring solution, The Credit Pros took it a step further by offering several tools to track inaccurate information about your personal finances, from dark web monitoring to social security trace to pay-day monitoring.
Another thing worth noting is that the company’s free consultation is available in both English and Spanish — something not common in the credit repair industry.
Ovation Credit Repair Review
BBB Rating: A
Monthly fee: $79 – $109
Ovation Credit Repair was founded by attorneys and offers two levels of credit repair: the Essentials Plan and the Essentials Plus Plan. Both plans include:
A free consultation with a credit expert
Personalized credit dispute options
A case advisor that will oversee the process from start to finish
The two other plans (Essential, and Essential Plus) provide other aggressive tactics to fit the needs of their consumers such as:
Essential Plus Plan:
Unlimited Challenge Validation letters
Unlimited Creditor Goodwill letters
Official Ovation Recommendation Letter
Transunion Credit Monitoring
Aside from its many credit-related services, Ovation Credit Repair also stands out when it comes to discounts. These include a 20% couple’s discount, a credit of up to $50 on your next monthly payment for referring a friend or switching from another credit repair company, and discounts for seniors and members of the military.
Things You Should Know Before You Pay for a Credit Repair Company
Credit repair takes time
It can take from three months to a year to see an improvement on your credit report.
Not everything can be removed
Late or missed payments, charge-offs, and debt collections can only be removed if they can be verified as inaccurate.
You have to do some of the legwork
You still have to provide credit repair agencies with information and evidence about your accounts.
Most companies have setup fees
Most credit repair companies charge a first work fee. A first work fee is a one-time fee charged for opening the account, ranging from $15 to $200.
How Credit Repair Agencies Work
Each credit repair company has its own way of doing things, but most of them follow this four-step process:
1. Free Consultation
Walk you through the credit repair process
Pull up your credit report from all three bureaus
See if you’d be a good candidate for a credit repair
2. Power of Attorney and Consent If they find inaccuracies, they will:
Send you a document that lists possible errors for you to evaluate.
Send you a written contract establishing a power of attorney or another form of consent
Send dispute letters or challenge these inaccuracies legally on your behalf
3. Challenge Items
After having your legal consent, the company then proceeds to challenge these items with both creditors and the credit bureaus, through letters and phone calls.
If they’re able to verify that the challenged items are in fact errors, they’ll have to remove them from your credit profile.
4. Progress Report
The credit repair company keeps track of the different processes and sends updates on the status of each disputed item
After the dispute is resolved, the credit repair company will send you a progress report along with an updated copy of your credit report
You can then review the changes
Debt Settlement vs Credit Repair
Though both are in the personal finance sphere, it’s important to note that there’s a difference between settling your debt and using a credit repair service to fix your bad credit. While the former falls under credit counseling, aiming to advise on managing your money and debts, credit repair looks to challenge negative information on your report.
If you’re interested in using a credit counselor, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling offers free help.
Resolving your debt and making a deal to pay it off at a reduced amount
Identifying and fixing mistakes on credit report
Negative impact on credit for up to 7 years
Hurts chances of getting loans or credit cards
Increases the possibility of being approved for loans and credit cards
Things to Pay Attention To When Hiring a Credit Repair Company
When signing the dotted line, pay close attention to the conditions that are being stipulated, to make sure you’re dealing with a legitimate company that won’t violate your rights or take advantage of you in the future.
If a credit repair service does any of the following, they might be taking advantage of you:
Asks for upfront payment before doing any work for you. The CROA explicitly forbids companies to request or receive payment until they’ve completed the promised services.
Avoids or refuses to explain your rights to you or asks you to waive those rights. Credit repair companies are required to give you a copy of the Consumer Credit File Rights Under State and Federal Law and a copy of the contract to view before signing. Luckily, the CROA automatically voids any waiver of rights.
Promises to remove ALL negative information from your credit report. While a credit repair company can remove incorrect information from your report, they can’t legally take off negative data if it’s accurate.
Tells you to give false information or dispute accurate information. Some scammers advise clients to claim they’ve been the victim of identity theft to get negative items taken off — even if no such thing occurred. This is illegal and could land you in serious trouble.
Tells you not to contact the three credit reporting bureaus. Everybody’s entitled to one free credit report a year from each of the credit reporting companies.
Promises a new credit identity or asks you to create one. Some shady services give you a nine-digit identification number they call a CPN (credit profile or credit privacy number). Another tactic is asking you to apply for an Employer Identification Number from the IRS. Sometimes they’ll even illegally sell you a new Social Security Number, often stolen from children. They then ask you to apply for credit using these new numbers. This is illegal and a scam.
The contract is missing key information, such as:
the fees charged
a breakdown of the services to be provided
the time period in which said services will be provided
the company’s name and business address
a section in the contract notifying your right to cancel it within three days of signing
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
1. What is a credit repair agency?
A credit repair company is a for profit organization that analyses your credit report and disputes errors to collectors on your behalf.
2. Are credit repair companies a scam?
Credit repair companies are legal. The Credit Repair Organizations Act (CROA) was established to provide protection to the consumer, making it illegal for credit repair companies to lie to you and charge you for services they have not provided. In addition, the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) was created to protect the consumer’s personal information and avoid identity theft or the wrongful use of personal information.
3. How to avoid credit repair scams?
A deceitful credit repair company will falsely promise to erase loans, bankruptcies, and other negative items from your report. On occasions, these companies promise to give the consumer a new credit identity, and ask for money upfront. This can lead you to commit illegal actions such as identity theft and fraud.
If a credit repair company makes any of these promises to you, it is most likely a scam.
4. Can you really pay someone to fix your credit?
You can pay a credit repair company to help you fix your credit. Credit repair companies cannot delete accurate information from your credit report but they can help you by disputing errors on your behalf.
5. How to verify a credit repair company?
To avoid credit repair scams it is important to research different companies, Federal Trade Commission recommendations, Better Business Bureau (BBB) ratings, and reviews left by other consumers.
The Credit Repair Organization Act (CROA) requires credit repair companies to provide a written contract explaining in detail the services they will provide, how long it will take to help you, guarantees, and the total cost for their services.
6. What does credit repair cost?
The cost of a credit repair company depends on the services you need. Some credit repair companies charge their clients a monthly fee while others charge based on the specific services they provide.
7. Is credit repair worth the cost?
Depends on the services you need and the time you have available to dispute the error on your credit report, a credit repair company is worth the cost. Credit repair agencies offer a variety of packages at different prices to fit the needs of their customers.
8. Do credit repair companies hurt your credit?
The purpose of credit repair companies is to fix your credit, not to hurt it. However, you need to be aware that credit repair companies can only dispute errors on your report and cannot erase accurate information.
9. Can I repair my own credit?
Yes, you can DIY your credit repair. However, you must have some basic knowledge in order to succeed. You can dispute errors on your credit report as part of the services offered by Experian. Using their website you can dispute, explain and send your dispute to the bureau’s system. If there was an error, the bureau will remove it by the next cycle.
10. What if I have an error on my credit report during the Coronavirus pandemic?
If you notice any errors on your credit report, or if you feel a late payment was reported unfairly, you must contact your lender to get an answer.
11. In what ways can I manage the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic on my credit ?
The CARES Act signed into law on March 27 provides homeowners with protection against foreclosure and mortgage forbearance for borrowers with loans backed by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the USDA, and the VA until December 31st, 2020. You can obtain an extension and a forbearance of 180 days.
Student loan debtors received additional relief by having loan payments suspended, collections and defaults put on hold, and interest rates set to zero until December 31st, 2020.
The three major credit reporting agencies (Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax) are offering access to a free credit report weekly through April 2021. Now is as good a time as any to check your reports for errors and, if there were any present, to use the services of a credit repair company to fix them.
How We Found The Best Credit Repair Companies of 2021
Once we concluded this phase, we selected those companies that stood out from the rest in each of the following categories:
Best credit repair financial tools
Best pricing for credit fixing services
Best credit repair service guarantee
Reputation and Customer Experience
The companies in our list have been around for over ten years and have a strong reputation across different consumer-review platforms, like the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and Google Reviews.
New York, May 11, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The unpredictability of the 2020 economy had very few positives to report on. However, one ray of light across the board was that the average FICO score for U.S consumers hit a record 710 last year, with millennials leading the way, boasting an 11-point increase.
Credit scores are important for millennials. Aged between 25-34, they are the generation who grew up during a changing financial climate, where more emphasis was placed on having a good FICO score in order to be approved for the likes of mortgages, auto loans and credit cards.
Yet not all US millennials had such a good year when it came to credit. Many are still struggling to gain the financial backing they need for both their personal and business life, and as a result aren’t benefiting from lower interest rates, higher credit limits, or access to better offers.
If you’re a millennial looking for credit repair, the team at Credit Planned is helping your generation get back on track:
Credit Planned is a platform that educates users on financial literacy to help them improve their credit and better plan their financial lives. A pioneer in credit repair, personal and business credit building, and funding solutions, they offer free online advice and how-to guides, alongside free over-the-phone consultations, to help people repair, improve, and maintain great credit.
With over 1,500 happy clients, each month they secure over $50,000 in funding and boost over 100 credit scores.
2. How can Credit Planned help millennials improve credit scores and access financial funding?
Above all else, Credit Planned can provide clear, actionable consultation on a case-by-case basis. As they experts when it comes to the financial industry, you will be given help and advice that will truly make the difference.
If your credit score has become a barrier to entry and approval for the likes of mortgages and loans, there are basic things you can do to quickly improve your score. While some are achievable from your side, some will need expert knowledge of the financial industry, both of which Credit Planned can help with.
Securing funding from banks can be made more achievable with an improved credit score. However, where real gains can be made is through leveraging the relationships Credit Planned have with these banks to secure 0% interest funding (anywhere from 50-150k) for 1-3 years.
Corporate Credit Blueprint
Many business owners aren’t aware of the power of business credit, and some don’t even know how to affects your personal score directly. Credit Planned can help optimize your business credit, no matter the size of your business, and open the doors to help your business grow.
3. Put past decisions and improper financial education behind you
Credit Planned are helping millennials who didn’t receive a financial education build the knowledge to prosper once more. From debunking credit mythics to posting great tips via their Facebook page, their online resources are an invaluable addition for anybody who is looking to improve their credit score and secure funding.
Book a free consultation and get your credit score on track
A good credit score indicates that you know how to manage your budget and make good financial decisions. Woven into most key systems in our society, it’s something that needs to be addressed should it be halting your progress in any walk of life.
Book a free consultation via the website, or by calling (877) 650-5116
Credit Planned are a pioneer in credit repair, personal and business credit building, and funding solutions. Don’t be afraid to scale your business or become financially independent. Read our advice, speak to us via a free consultation, and start building your credit today. Learn more via the website: https://creditplanned.com/.
On average, one in five Americans has an unfair credit score. Mistakes on reports from bureaus are quite common. They range from misspellings to events that never happened. A false bankruptcy may tarnish your records for up to a decade! Experts may have such errors erased, so your FICO total will rise immediately. These services are not free, but what is the best value for money?
Credit repair is a highly competitive industry. As a result, the best credit agencies on Credit Fixed have to offer reasonable pricing. Customers are always charged depending on the length of the billing cycle (e.g., 30-45 days). In addition, there could be an upfront fee.
Cost vs. Duration
Repair is a lengthy process. Although professionals speed it up, you still need several months (between 2 and 6) to clean your records. The most complex cases linger for a year. Trusted companies allow you to stop using their services at any time. Still, the longer — the more expensive.
Today, monthly rates from the most popular providers range between $79 and $129.95. If the upfront fee applies, it may be equal to the monthly payment or different. For example, with Sky Blue Credit, you pay $79 upon enrollment and $79 monthly.
Compare Service Levels
As you can see from this Sky Blue Credit vs Lexington Law review, not every company divides its services between packages. The first provider offers a universal solution that is also modestly priced. The competitor has three tiers, from basic to advanced.
This second scheme is the most common in the industry. Consumers choose cheaper or more expensive bundles depending on their needs. The tiers often include different numbers of disputes. For example, you may be able to disprove five items per bureau per billing cycle.
In addition to analysis and disputes, premium clients may get identity theft insurance, score tracking tools, and personal budgeting solutions. The biggest firms provide their proprietary apps — for instance, the Lexington Law app is highly rated in both Google Play and App Store. On the other hand, almost every company will let you track the status of your case through their web portal.
What You Are Paying For
While add-ons vary, the core services are the same. Any company will collect your reports from three major bureaus — TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian. The staff will scrutinize the records in search of debatable inaccuracies. Next, they will collect evidence and send dispute letters to bureaus on your behalf. Eventually, the errors should be eliminated, which pushes the total up immediately.
This describes the mission of any repair firm. It will help you fix your status more quickly. After all, experts can identify the most damaging mistakes and collect sufficient evidence from the get-go. In the process, they may also send different types of correspondence to lenders and collectors. This includes:
debt validation letters asking the lender to prove that you owe the specified amount;
goodwill letters asking them to stop reporting particular items;
cease and desist letters to collectors, do they stop bothering you.
Repair companies may eliminate different types of mistakes. However, only some of them can delete hard inquiries. Ideally, such items are created when you apply for a loan and the lender checks your credit history. Too many hard inquiries over a short period are damaging to the total.
No company can guarantee specific results. The professionals will not promise to increase the total by a certain number of points. However, you may get your money back if the firm is inefficient. Check the conditions of its money-back guarantee (if it exists).
Most commonly, clients are paid back if no entries are deleted within the first 60 or 90 days. Removal of a single item voids this guarantee. In exceptional cases, the policy is unconditional. At the moment, it is only provided by Sky Blue Credit Repair. You may stop using the services for any reason within the first 90 days and get a refund.
As there are so many companies, choosing the right provider is not easy. Consider the BBB ratings and genuine feedback from consumers on sites like TrustPilot. Check if the firm delivers on its promises. It must provide excellent support, while the absence of a money-back guarantee is a legitimate deal breaker.
Your FICO or VantageScore status depends on the contents of your credit reports. Unfortunately, data stored by TransUnion, Equifax, or Experian may be inaccurate. Correction of mistakes will make your score rise. However, this is not an overnight process.
The duration depends on the number of false entries, the bureaus involved, and the quality of the evidence submitted. Experts from top-rated credit repair companies at https://creditrepairpartner.com/ will give a tentative evaluation. If you open disputes by yourself, resolution may take longer. It may require a couple of months or half a year. Here are the basics of credit repair in the US in 2021
Why You Need a Higher Total
Many consumers suppose their credit score only affects borrowing. The lower the total — the more difficult and expensive it is to take out a loan. In reality, the consequences are more varied. Aside from banks, your credit history is accessed by landlords, insurers, and even employers. You may fail to land your dream job because your score is far from perfect.
Causes of Deterioration
This may happen fairly or unfairly. In any case, deterioration stems from negative information on your credit reports. Items like missed payments or evictions pull the score down. Some consumers have to remove bankruptcies and judgments that never happened. Even your personal details may be flawed, although correcting the wrong spelling does not affect the total.
Both systems (FICO and VantageScore) look at similar factors for the calculation. The three most influential elements for the first method are:
history of payments (35% of the score)
how much you owe in total (30%)
length of credit history (15%)
Your credit mix (use of different types of credit) and new accounts affect 10% each. As you can see, late or missed payments, bankruptcies, and defaults are extremely damaging. Another crucial aspect is your ‘credit utilization ratio’, which applies to revolving credit — i.e., credit cards.
The lower your balance in comparison with the total amount of credit — the better. For example, if the limit is $5,000, and you have used $2,500, the ratio is too high (50%). Experts recommend keeping it below 30% or 11%, depending on who you ask.
The Fixing Process
So, what should you do if your reports contain wrong amounts or false entries? First, you are not alone. On average, every 5th consumer in the US has mistakes on their official records. Fortunately, everyone can have errors deleted to raise the total. There are two ways to go about it. You could try doing everything by yourself or hire repair experts. Either way, here is what the process involves.
1. Collection of Data
Every US citizen may get a free annual copy of their report from each of the three major bureaus. Due to the pandemic, the service is now accessible every week. Go to www.annualcreditreport.com to collect data from TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian at once.
Downloading it online is the fastest way, but you may also call the organization or send them a request by mail. If you hire a fixing company, they will collect this information for you. You may also get a free introductory consultation.
2. Identification of False Derogatories
Next, you (or the expert) will need to establish inaccuracies. Note that credit reporting agencies do not share data with one another. Any or all of your reports may be flawed, which complicates the process.
As you can see from the score breakdown above, different categories of items affect the total differently. Credit repair professionals will prioritize the mistakes to fix the score faster.
Collection of Evidence
When the report is inaccurate, it is your job to prove this. A repair firm will gather evidence on your behalf. This includes bank statements and other documents showing that the damaging entries are false. Professionals also send debt validation letters to your lenders. These ask them to prove that you owe the amount specified in the reports. As you can imagine, the duration of this stage varies. The more mistakes you want to be removed — the more evidence must be gathered.
4. Formal Disputes
Armed with the evidence, you may now send formal dispute letters to the reporting agency (or agencies) involved. The bureau will investigate the claim and reply to you within 30 days. It may accept or reject the changes. Alternatively, additional proof may be required.
The Bottom Line
As you can see, fixing the score in under 30 days is next to impossible. You need to collect the reports, analyze them and gather evidence to support your claims. It is crucial to provide conclusive proof, so there is no back and forth between you and the bureaus.
The simplest cases may be resolved and just over a month. The most complex repair may last a full year. Generally, delegating this job to professionals will accelerate the result. The key is to choose a reliable firm that delivers on its promises. Check websites like BBB and TrustPilot for customer feedback, and make sure the company has a money-back guarantee for your peace of mind.