How we rank for
12% Monthly Fees
For most people, how much you pay per month for the service is the most important factor when trying to find a debt consolidation company. This is why 12% of a company’s score is devoted to the monthly price it charges for its services. We want to recommend the companies that charge an affordable price to allow you to pay off your debt sooner.
10% Up-front Fees
Similar to the monthly fees, how much a company charges to start a consolidation program is almost just as important to most consumers. We find the companies that charge little to no up-front fees and give them the most points.
10% Interest Rate
Consolidation companies are often able to negotiate lower interest rates with creditors. As interest rates are related to price, companies that can negotiate lower rates get more points in this category.
Industry accreditations show that a company is committed to the industry standards and best practices. Our surveys show that nearly 54% of consumers want the company of their choice to have major national accreditations. These accreditations include:
- NFCC (National Foundation for Credit Counseling)
- FCAA (Financial Counseling Association of America)
- Certified Counselors
7% Account Management
The best debt consolidation companies will offer the following features to their customers:
- Credit Counseling
- Free Consultation
- No Cancellation Fee
5% Time in Business
How long a company has been around is important to know. Companies that have more experience tend to have more knowledge and perform at greater efficiency. Newer companies receive less points than the most experienced ones.
5% State Availability
Many companies serve all 50 states, but not all of them do. One of our goals is to make sure that consumers are aware of the companies that service their state. This eliminates any time that would be wasted researching a company that does not service your state.
4% Spanish Services
Not many companies have representatives that speak Spanish to serve a significant portion of the population that seeks out debt consolidation services. We give companies that offer these services a few extra points for making the extra effort.
4% Online Dashboard
We like to see it when companies innovate and create better services and experiences for their customers. Many companies have started to offer an online dashboard or portal where their clients can see their account information as well as track their progress. This makes the company more transparent, and allows the consumer to feel more in control.
15% Consumer Reviews
Giving consumers a voice is an important part of BestCompany. Reviews left by customers provide first hand encounters with the companies we review. Our moderation team works to ensure that reviews left by company customers are real, honest, and helpful.
20% Expert Score
Along with the criteria points mentioned above, we take into account a variety of other factors that help determine the viability, stability and trustworthiness of a company. As experts in each specific industry, we conduct an extensive research process specifically tailored to each industry that considers many additional factors including:
- Company size
- Expert views
- Social media
- And much more.
We consider this Expert Review process a vital component of how we rank and review companies. As a result, the factors included are always changing and updating. We also reserve the right to voice our expert opinions as a part of each review.