The credit repair industry has hundreds of regulations that govern what these companies can do, can’t do and must do. These regulations are super important and are put in place to weed out the illegal, “scammy” type of companies. However, there are still thousands of credit repair companies that operate illegally and scam consumers. The goal of this blog is to help you stay away from them.
Before we move further, lets define what a credit repair company is. The main service that credit repair companies provide are cleaning up your credit by removing negative items from your credit report. Second, credit repair companies should also provide credit education and advice from a certified credit consultant the moment their client needs it – many lack this second part.
When looking for a trustworthy company it can be difficult, especially if you don’t know the regulations within the credit repair industry. Here are five things to look for when working with a credit repair agency.
1) No Guarantees “100 point credit score increase in 30 days!” “We will erase your credit card debt” “We will get you to an 800 credit score in 1 month!”
Blah, blah, BLAH!
If you hear any of these phrases or similar phrases, RUN! It is completely illegal for credit repair companies to guarantee or promise any specific result. This is usually the first red flag that you will see.
Because we can’t guarantee results, Take Charge Credit Consulting offers money back if no results are achieved in 90 days.
2) No Upfront Payments Another regulation for credit repair company is that no money can be taken without any work being done. Meaning, a credit repair company can not accept any money from a prospective client or client if they have not done any work for them.
3) No Flat Fees If a company charges a flat rate, say $1800 to fix your credit, they are operating illegally. Again, work must be done first in order to charge a client. Each month Take Charge Credit Consulting provides a service to each client and we are then able to bill a monthly fee.
4) Signed Agreement (Contract) Before any work has been done, credit repair companies must have a signed agreement by their clients. The agreement must outline the services provided, cancellation policy, cost, etc. Make sure the agreement is professional and be sure to ask for clarification on things you don’t understand.
5) Check Reviews! This is a pretty obvious step when shopping around for anything. What people say about the restaurant or product you’re going to buy can change your decision. The overall reviews should obviously be positive. Within the credit repair industry, there will almost always be the 1% who did not follow instructions, who are upset because of confusion, and/or ruin their credit after results have been achieved. Since we’re talking about reviews, please check ours out here. Feel free to leave a review also even if you are not a client. We hope to provide value for everyone, even if it’s just through a blog.
There are many other red flags to look for when looking for a reputable credit repair company, but these are the most common. Please let us know if you have any questions.