Credit Repair vs Credit Counseling

Updated: Aug 3


Man looking at his computer deciding which credit help to get
Ever wondered what's the difference between credit repair, restore, and counseling.

As I told you guys before, I am big on education.


Now that I have educated myself on credit and increased my own credit score by 110 points in a little over a year.


I am on a mission to help others to do the same. I do this by trying to answer questions in my blog that I once had.


One of the more pressing questions that I have been asked lately is………


What is the difference between credit repair and credit restoration?


Honestly, I thought they were the same thing. I hope to tackle that answer for you today.


Please leave comments below if this article was helpful….. If it is and you want more, let me know!


Credit Repair

Man looking at his credit score and looking sad, because he needs help.
What is a Credit Repair company and what can they do for you?

So, let's start with a credit repair company. Credit repair companies aim to build your credit by disputing outdated or incorrect information on your credit reports according to Nerd Wallet , author Bev O’Shea.


They follow up with the credit bureaus checking for your results and making sure that errors stay off your report.


The article also went on to say that “credit repair can cost around $100 a month and take several months — with no guarantee that your credit score will be higher at the end.”


I don’t know about you, but I’m already irritated.


Another question people often ask is, “Is credit repair legal?”


The answer to that is yes, in every state except Georgia.

Now as you will soon learn, one of my favorite places to go for financial advice is The Balance (It’s a blog that has great advice on all things money), I particularly like the way author Latoya Irby broke down exactly what you should look for if you chose to sign up for this service.


In the article, “Is Credit Repair Illegal?”, she mentioned that you want to make sure you get a contract with these companies and read it thoroughly (as you should with all contracts.) Make sure that these things are outlined in the contract.


  • Payment amount required

  • A detailed description of the services you’ll get

  • Deadline to complete the services

  • A statement that you can cancel the contract within three business days


Also it mentions, you want to make sure that they do not ask for money upfront. RED FLAG!


Quite frankly, they really don’t do anything that you can’t do for yourself. Check out my article, “Increased Your Credit Score By 50 Points, Here's What I Did!!


But if you want the help because it can get a bit overwhelming check out Credit Nerd.com, they offer free and paid services.


It's worth looking into.



Credit Restoration


Now what is Credit Restoration, it is very similar to credit repair, some argue that it’s the same as thing, while others say that credit restoration goes more in depth when it comes to the services they offer.


I researched them both and came across this video on YouTube and I thought this was a good description of what the difference may be for these services, Credit Restoration Versus Credit Repair [Credit Restoration]


This video is about 2 years old but as I scrolled down videos, many are still disputing within the credit community and standing their ground when it comes to whether credit repair and credit restoration are the same.


Honestly, I’m gonna steer clear of this argument. Like I said before, you could do either of them yourself.


I understand that most people don’t know where to start, so they use these companies to give them direction.


I thought I knew what I was doing at first but had to redirect my efforts. I don’t regret this because I learned so much.


Others just don’t feel like doing it themselves and would rather throw money at the problem.


My advice, Save Your Money!


For people like me who do not have money to throw around like that, another option is to get free credit counseling.


Yes, I said, “FREE!”




Credit Counseling

A man getting credit counseling to help with his debt.
Credit counseling is a free source that allows you to dig deeper into your finances and help you to correct bad habits.

Last but not least, there is credit counseling.


Credit counseling is usually offered by nonprofit organizations and offers their services free of charge.


According to Debt.org in an article written by Bents Dulio, credit counselors work with you to try to change your behavior.


They will comb through your finances and help you create a budget, look for credit cards with lower interest rates, and/or get you enrolled in a debt management program.


This is great for people who want to learn how to change the way they think about their finances.


I was able to tackle this alone, but had I known this was around, I would have gone with this type of program.


I liked that I went at it alone because it forced me to learn and build my personal finance community through all the interesting articles I found on the internet.


Like, Nerd Wallet, The Balance, The Frugal Creditnista and podcasts like Frugal Friends, Brown Ambition, and How to Money.



I understand that this could be a very scary thing for someone who is just starting out. But it is never too late to build your personal finance community and change the way you see credit and money.


It can lead to things you never thought were possible.


Because I took the time to learn, search for resources through articles and blogs like these, and applied what I learned, I was able to retire myself as a teacher and start my own company wholesaling properties.


But that’s a whole other story!



Major Take Away


Taking on new venture can be hard, especially when we know it's something we need to do. But there is support available around every corner.


As you walk away from this article, I challenge you to decide what your financial goals are, share in the comments. I would love to help in any way that I can. We all need a little motivation.





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