Scoring models consider how much you owe and across how many different accounts. If you have debt across a large number of accounts, it may be beneficial to pay off some of the accounts, if you can. Paying down your debt is the goal of many who've accrued debt in the past, but even after you pay the balance down to zero, consider keeping that account open. Keeping paid-off accounts open can be a plus in your overall credit mix since they're aged accounts in good (paid-off) standing. You may also consider debt consolidation.
*Ranking information is based on a compilation of reviews from the following third-party review sites: Bestcompany.com, Credible.com, BadCredit.org, and TheCreditReview.com. Credit.com has examined each review on the third-party sites listed and compared those sites' findings with the individual credit repair services' websites to derive the Credit.com reviews shown here.
A credit repair company initiates credit challenges to bureaus when they notice errors in your credit reports. Credit report disputes involve challenging credit bureaus, drafting goodwill letters to remove late payments and contacting data furnishers to verify old debts. Credit repair specialists review the results and, if necessary, escalate the dispute process.
With what they charge, is Lexington Law effective at helping people improve their credit history? As you'd expect with such a large business, the reviews are mixed. Most credit repair services are criticized for not making noticeable improvements in less than two months, but that's to be expected. But, Lexington seems to have a higher-than-average number of people who say that they didn't get prompt responses from company reps, not just that their reports didn't improve quickly. On the other hand, we found numerous people saying that their credit scores improved dramatically as they stayed with the service, usually for six months on average.
"My experience with CreditRepair.com is the best choice ever, I’m happy I am seeing good results on my credit report. I’m so happy debts are being removed from my credit. My score is rising daily, an I am receiving letters from the creditors that confirm the removals, I can’t believe it. All I had to do was become a member with CreditRepair.com, and let them handle everything. Customer service is awesome! Someone is always available to you, they contact me according to any alert to my credit, and I will recommend any one to join CreditRepair.com. The best results, thanks!"
Credit repair is the process of disputing negative marks on credit reports to get them removed, which raises your credit score. Credit histories often contain inaccurate or invalid items that damage your score. If you check your credit and your score is lower than you anticipated, it could be because of incorrect information on your credit reports.
Other than updating their website, Credit Firm could rank higher among credit repair companies by offering a satisfaction guarantee. While $49/month is affordable and the service is easy to cancel, this provider could take it a step further by letting customers know that they're committed to achieving a specific level of results within a given timeframe.
Credit Repair Consultants also proudly proclaims that they offer a refund policy on your monthly fees. The catch? You have to be a customer for a full 12 months before you can request an evaluation of your account; if the service has successfully removed or improved your account, you may not get a refund at all. They will claim a credit of $60 for every deleted or improved item on your credit report, and then compare it to the fees you've paid. In other words, if you've paid for 12 months at nearly $60 and they've removed or improved 12 things on your credit report, you're not entitled to anything back.
Many people don’t have the time to do their own credit repair or don’t understand how to make their case. So they look into hiring a credit repair company to dispute errors for them. These companies can charge a fee for their legwork—more on how that works below. There are times when the extra help is valuable. For example, if you have multiple errors across credit reports or you’ve been the victim of identity theft.
We got even more confused when reading through the company's return and refund policy. It talks about returning software to Pyramid - but every description of the service says that it can all be accessed online. Why would they be shipping software to their customers - and would their customers install it with no clear explanation as to what it's used for?
MSI Credit Solutions assists clients with credit repair, restoration and credit building. MSI is fully bonded and offers services in English and Spanish. Their credit repair services can help you remove incorrect marks on your credit report, including items like late payments, collections, charge offs, repossessions, tax liens, judgments and bankruptcies.
Essentials: for a one-time fee of $69 and monthly fees of $69, you'll get the basics of a personal case advisor, personalized dispute options, and an online dispute manager for tracking everything you submit to the various bureaus, agencies, and so forth. You'll also get access to financial management tools to help you budget for savings and paying down your debts.
In an industry like credit repair, reputation is everything when choosing which service to use. In that regard, Pyramid comes up short. To find out their track record with the BBB, we had to find them under their alternate business name, Credit Concierge Services LLC. The BBB lists that business as "NR" (No Rating) status until more data comes in; when we found that listing, there was only one review posted and it was negative. We found just over four dozen mostly-positive reviews specifically for Pyramid around the web, but in an age where we know that customer reviews can be faked (unlike what you find on TopConsumerReviews.com!), it's hard to know which ones are truthful without trusted validation like the BBB.
Either way, you should always remove any errors or outdated information from your credit report — regardless of the actual effect on your score — as soon as you discover them. A clean credit report can give you peace of mind the next time you apply for a loan; you’ll know that an inaccurate credit score isn’t holding you back from qualifying for a better interest rate, saving you time and money in the long run.
When considering the fees, it’s important to weigh what you’re getting in return. According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), credit repair firms can’t legally do anything for you that you can’t do for yourself. You just have to be willing to spend the time reviewing your credit reports for negative or inaccurate information, reaching out to the credit bureaus to dispute that information, and following up on those disputes to make sure they’re being investigated.
We're still of the opinion that they have something to offer when it comes to credit repair, so we'll get to their packages shortly. First, however, it's important to understand two things: their fees have nearly doubled over the last five years, which could be related to having reached a settlement in Maryland over allegations of not conducting their business properly with respect to all legal requirements within the industry. This changed their grade with the Better Business Bureau; at the time of our last review, Lexington Law enjoyed a respectable "A-", but during our most current survey of their services they were designated as "Not Rated" while the BBB reevaluates their score.
If the company's credit repair specialists identify errors on your credit reports, they dispute those errors on your behalf. A credit repair company handles everything from drafting letters to managing correspondence with credit reporting agencies, creditors and debt collectors. You might need to supply documentation to support disputes. Some credit repair companies also offer credit counseling and debt management to help clients improve and maintain credit standing.
When the bureaus and data furnishers receive the dispute and supporting information, they then work with the credit repair company to determine if the item should be removed from your credit report. The major law governing your rights when it comes to credit reporting is the Fair Credit Reporting Act, but it isn’t the only law on your side when it comes to credit repair.