Personal Finance
June 16, 2019
By Jack Ryder

Accredited Debt Relief Review

Simple. Thrifty. Living.

Accredited Debt Relief is a highly ranked debt management company. Compared against other programs like Freedom Debt Relief and National Debt Relief, it has a strong showing. It offers credit counseling and personalized products and services for consumers who need help eliminating debt. Is it right for you? You be the judge. Here’s a detailed review of Accredited:

Best Debt Relief Companies of 2019

RankDebt Relief ServiceBest ForCostExpert Rating
1Accredited Debt ReliefOverall Debt Relief18%-25% of debt★★★★★
2Freedom Debt ReliefAffordability15%-25% of debt★★★★
3National Debt ReliefDebt Settlement18%-25% of debt★★★★
4Payoff LoansDebt Consolidation5.99%-24.99% loan rates★★★★

Best Debt Relief Companies of 2019

RankDebt Relief ServiceBest for
1Accredited Debt ReliefOverall Debt Relief
2Freedom Debt ReliefAffordability
3National Debt ReliefDebt Settlement
3Payoff LoansDebt Consolidation

Accredited Debt Relief Review

Get Started with Accredited

Accredited Debt Relief Review image
  • Best for: Debt settlement AND consolidation. Accredited Debt Relief is one of the only services that offers both debt settlement and debt consolidation. You can call (877) 729-0051 to get started or sign up for Accredited Debt Relief here.
  • Price: Like most debt settlement companies, Accredited Debt Relief take a percentage of whatever enrolled debt they are able to settle, in this case 18 percent to 25 percent, depending on your debt. So if they are able to reduce your debt from $10,000 to $8,000, you would owe $360 to $500. If there is no change in your debt, you don’t have to pay anything.
  • Time frame: Accredited Debt Relief’s program time frame ranges from 24-48 months, which is the average time for debt settlement.
  • Other highlights: Accredited Debt Relief is one of the only debt relief companies to offer debt management tools as well as debt consolidation services. Debt consolidation services are when a company will help you consolidate your debt in order to pay a lower interest rate on it.
  • Available states: One of the benefits of Accredited Debt Relief is that it is available in 39 of the 50 states, which is rare for a debt relief company. The average is usually around 35 states.
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Accredited provides credit counseling. Additionally, it works with clients to create custom debt management plans. What are custom debt plans? Well, experienced agents work one-on-one with clients to create realistic plans to manage debt.

How It Works

  • Consultation
  • Financial review
  • Debt management program
  • Negotiate with creditors

What is the process? Well, you start with an initial free consultation. After, your team will review your financial situation. Then, it will determine the best way to manage your situation. Finally, your agent will negotiate with creditors to settle or reduce your overall debt. Additionally, they will advise you on how to set up a monthly payments account to make paying bills easier. However, it’s then up to you to make payments until the debt is paid.

Debt You Need to Qualify

Keep in mind, most companies only work with people who have a certain amount of enrolled debt. Here are the amounts you need:

  • For Accredited: $7,500
  • Other Companies: $10,000

Controlling Your Debt

Know that if you choose Accredited Debt Relief, the products and services provided are designed to help clients take control of their own debt. The company does not:

  • take on your debt
  • provide loans
  • make monthly payments for you

Also, the company doesn’t handle legal, accounting or tax issues or credit repair directly. If your credit is good, you can also apply for a consolidation loan through a traditional online loan company.

Debt Relief vs. Credit Repair

Credit repair and debt programs are often confused. Accredited Debt Relief is not a credit repair company. Therefore, it can’t help with credit repair-type functions. So, what’s the difference? Here are credit repair fixes that Accredited doesn’t help with:

  • disputing negative items on your credit report
  • correcting errors
  • offering credit score advice

However, fixing your debt issues can certainly have a positive impact on your credit score.

If you are looking to fix your credit score, you can contest items yourself via the credit bureaus. Or, you can hire one of the many credit repair companies to help. However, make sure you find a reputable company to use. Here’s a good list of the best credit repair companies.

Debt relief costs can be complicated. For example, Accredited costs and services vary by state. Also, costs are based on whether the company is able to reach a settlement with your creditors. However, there are no sign-up fees or monthly dues. Also, the company offers free consultation. So how much will you spend? Here’s a quick breakdown:

  • Fees: 18%-25% of enrolled debt
  • Additional fees: $0

Compliance Rules

Accredited complies with the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule. What does this rule mean? Well, it prohibits products and services from collecting upfront fees. If you choose Accredited, you will not have to pay the service fees on top of your first monthly payments.

Accredited Debt Relief only operates in certain states:

  • States: Accredited only operates in 39 states: AK, AL, AR, AZ, CA, DC, FL, IA, ID, IN, MA, MD, MI, MO, MS, MT, NC, NE, NM, NV, NY, OK, PA, SD, TX, TN, UT, VA, WI

Accredited Debt Relief is a young company. However, it quickly earned a reputation as a trustworthy company. How trustworthy? Impressively, it boasts an A+ rating as a BBB Accredited Business, with only seven complaints in the last three years. It is also accredited with:

  • The American Fair Credit Council (AFCC)
  • The Better Business Bureau (BBB)
  • The International Association of Professional Debt Arbitrators (IAPDA)

Common Accredited Reviews

  • BBB: 20/21 positive reviews
  • TrustPilot: 9.5/10 rating

Overall, reviews are positive for Accredited’s services. On the BBB site, 20 of 21 reviews praise the company. Most of these are about quality of customer service and debt relief programs. That’s impressive for the BBB.

Additionally, the company scores highly with TrustPilot reviewers, with 84.7 percent of giving a five-star review, giving it a 9.5/10 rating. Finally, testimonials on Accredited Debt Relief’s website show a high success rate in reaching settlement deals.

What Do Customers Like

  • customer service
  • knowledgeable advice
  • empathy

Reviews from satisfied clients praise the company’s empathetic customer service, trustworthiness and knowledgeable settlement advice. What does that mean? Reviewers say that agents are kind, non-judgmental and reassuring.

Many clients come away feeling less embarrassed about their circumstances and confident in the debt relief options Accredited Debt Relief presented.

Accredited Debt Relief complaints are rare. For example, only a few frustrated clients vented about their experiences on social media. Aside from some reports of unsolicited emails, Accredited has a positive reputation.

Does that mean it’s prefect? No. Satisfied customers doesn’t necessarily mean the company is without flaws.

Most Common Complaints

  • Availability: Services are not available in all states. So, if you happen to live outside of the 39 states Accredited covers, you’ll need to look at other debt settlement options.
  • Website: The website lacks some online resources and basic tools. Simple debt calculator or articles explaining the types of debt relief options offered could help.
  • Workable Debts: The site also doesn’t explain what types of debt are workable, whether medical bills and secured debts qualify for their service, or if they only work to settle credit card and other unsecured debts.
  • Few Online Options: The website appears designed to get you on the phone with one of their persuasive representatives to discuss and offer debt management plans.

How does Accredited stack up? It falls somewhere in the middle of the pack of the top debt relief companies. Similarly, other debt companies are accredited with the AFCC, IAPDA and BBB. They also have positive customer reviews and have approximately the same costs.

How Other Companies Compare

Some companies offer debt services that Accredited does not provide, like:

  • secured debt management (mortgages, car loans, etc.)
  • bankruptcy and business debt settlement
  • IRS payments and back taxes
  • personal unsecured debt

Accredited’s Reputation

What makes Accredited different? It is known for its strong customer support and reputable history. This makes it stand out. In addition, the company has a proven record of negotiating settlement terms with creditors and has earned the confidence of their clients.

No Cure-All for Debt

Remember, no single management company is a cure-all for debt. Not all debt can be settled. Also, depending on the amount of debt, settlements can result in tax liabilities or hefty penalty fees and affect credit scores.

Things to keep in mind:

  • Debt relief doesn’t remove all debt
  • It will impact your credit score
  • Settlements don’t always work
  • It’s a difficult process to get through

Is it worth it, then? It can be. If you choose Accredited Debt Relief, know that debt relief programs can help minimize the short-term strain and long-term impact, letting you better pursue your future financial goals. While it can’t fix all your financial needs, debt programs can be a good first step.

What Is Debt Relief?

Debt relief can actually mean many things and depends on the service you are using. Some companies use debt settlement programs. These are designed to negotiate with lenders to settle your debts. Others use consolidation, which combines your debts under one loan that has a lower APR. That way, you can pay down your bills faster. Many companies combine both and also offer counseling to help you with your overall financial situation.

Who Qualifies?

How do you qualify? Many companies will only take you if you have enrolled debt of $10,000 or more. Although, there are a few settlement companies that will take people with lower debts. For consolidation, your debt generally doesn’t have to be so high. A credit score is not required.

What Is the Process?

It is generally a pretty straight-forward process. How does it work? Generally, you start with a consultation. Then, the company will go over your situation and come up with a negotiation plan. Finally, it will negotiate with lenders to come up with a payment plan. After that, it is up to you to make those payments.

What Debts Qualify?

Generally, debt settlement programs only deal with credit card debt. Medical or loan debts don’t apply. Of course, there are always excepts to the rule. For consolidation, any debt is usually acceptable. However, the debts have to be able to be paid with the consolidated loan. This can be tricky with mortgages, so refinancing would be a better option in that case.

Does It Affect My Taxes?

This one can be tricky. Typically, the IRS doesn’t tax any forgiven debt if you can prove you didn’t have the money to pay those debts. So, for most people, it won’t affect their taxes. However, if the IRS decides that you did have the resources to pay those debts, you might end up being taxed. This is rare. Bottom line, debt settlement programs shouldn’t affect your taxes.

How Does it Affect My Credit Score?

Truthfully, it can have a big impact. Debt settlement programs can be a drain on your credit score. Most people take the hit to their credit score in order to fix their finances. Also, on the plus side, it only stays on your report for 7 years. Bankruptcy stays on for 10 years, so it is a better option. However, if you have the resources to handle your situation yourself, that is always the better option for your credit score.

Accredited Debt Relief not exactly what you are looking for? Here are some other debt relief reviews to help you compare the top products against each other.

Freedom Debt Relief Review

Get Started with Freedom

Freedom Debt Relief Review image
  • Price: Freedom Debt Relief prices range between 15 and 25 percent of enrolled debt.
  • Debt Qualification: You must enroll at least $15,000 unsecured debt to qualify.
  • Features: Freedom Debt Relief reviews show that services are really what give this debt settlement provider an edge. Not only does this company offer the traditional consolidation, reduction and bankruptcy options, but it also has credit counseling services and some guides on how to manage debt yourself.
  • Customer Service: Exceptional customer service that is available every day of the week is another benefit to working with Freedom Debt Relief. Many other debt relief companies only operate Monday through Friday, but Freedom Debt Relief also has Saturday and Sunday hours that run into the evenings. You can contact them by phone or email, whichever works best for you.
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Disclosure
Disclosure

Freedom Debt Relief Disclosure: Our estimates are based on prior results, which will vary depending on your specific enrolled creditors and your individual program terms. Not all clients are able to complete their program for various reasons, including their ability to save sufficient funds. We do not guarantee that your debts will be resolved for a specific amount or percentage or within a specific period of time. We do not assume your debts, make monthly payments to creditors or provide tax, bankruptcy, accounting or legal advice or credit repair services. Our service is not available in all states and our fees may vary from state to state. Please contact a tax professional to discuss potential tax consequences of less than full balance debt resolution. Read and understand all program materials prior to enrollment. The use of debt settlement services will likely adversely affect your creditworthiness, may result in you being subject to collections or being sued by creditors or collectors and may increase the outstanding balances of your enrolled accounts due to the accrual of fees and interest. However, negotiated settlements we obtain on your behalf resolve the entire account, including all accrued fees and interest. C.P.D. Reg. No. T.S.12-03825.

National Debt Relief Review

Get Started with National

National Debt Relief Review image
  • Price: 18-25 percent of enrolled debt is the National Debt Relief price for helping to negotiate your debt reduction.
  • Debt Qualifications: To qualify for National Debt Relief services, you must have at least $7,500 in qualifying debt.
  • Features: Working with National Debt Relief gives you access to a toolbox of options for reducing your monthly outlay on debts. You can pursue everything from National debt consolidation to debt relief, and even bankruptcy services are available if you are unable to keep up with your existing debts.
  • Customer Service: Keeping up with your debt relief program is quick and easy with plenty of contact options. You can always call toll-free during extended service hours on any weekday. Email and fax are also available for anyone who needs to make contact with their debt relief counselor.
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Payoff Debt Consolidation

Payoff website

Payoff Debt Consolidation image
  • Best for: Debt consolidation. Payoff deals in debt consolidation loans, and is one of the best at it, but if you are looking for debt settlement, Payoff is not the right choice.
  • Rates: Payoff Loans range from 5.99% to 24.99%, depending on the lender and your qualifications for the loan.
  • Loan Amounts: You can borrow from $5,000 to $35,000 to pay off your credit card debt.
  • Features: Payoff concentrates more on debt consolidation than other loan companies. Its main concern is helping you pay off your debt, so it offers things like flexible payments, financial guidance and low starting rates.
  • Customer Service: Payoff is known for its great customer service, walking you through every step of the debt consolidation process. You can reach out to Payoff through online chat or a personal member advocate.
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Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
Accredited Debt Relief
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