• Bottom Line
  • Our Top Partner
    This company can help if you have a moderate amount of debt, and want help settling some and consolidating the rest.
    Can help with consolidation and settling debt.
    Not all debt qualifies and not available in all states.
  • Compare Offers
    If you are looking for a one-stop shop to find the best debt management solution that fits your financial situation, Accredited is the company for you.
    See offers from multiple lenders at once.
    Might pay higher prices than going to lenders directly.
  • For Large Debts
    Reduce large amounts of debt for a fraction of the amount owed in a fast and affordable manner.
    Settle large amounts of debt - up to $100,000.
    Won’t consolidate debts less than $10,000.
  • For Lower Payment
    If you really need to shrink your monthly payment, CreditAssociates can help.
    Get a low monthly payment with a long repayment term.
    Longer repayment term results in higher interest costs.
* Above are featured partners. Learn more.

For most people dealing with multiple debts with different monthly payments and deadlines is overwhelming and the whole situation can get out of hands very quickly. One missed payment can add up with late fees, penalties causing the overall debt to go up and become unmanageable. A debt settlement company helps you pay off your debts by negotiating with your creditors on your behalf. You will stop making payments to your creditors and start contributing to a special account managed by the debt settlement company. Some of these debt relief companies also offer a debt consolidation loan which is a new loan that you use to combine multiple debts into one and make a single monthly payment with a flat interest rate.

Debt settlement companies tend to target people with a lot of debt and can hardly make their monthly payments, which means many of the people that seek these services have poor credit. Debt settlement companies claim to ‘settle’ your debt, reduce the amount you owe by working out the terms with lenders. Most companies charge hefty fees, a percentage of the debt settled.

What are the best debt consolidation companies?

Choosing the best debt consolidation company can be difficult. Personal finance is inherently personal, so what works for one person might not work for someone else. Still, there are some rules of thumb you can follow.

The best debt consolidation companies will provide options that let you consolidate all of your existing debt. You don’t want to consolidate only some of your loans, leaving others outstanding, as that can quickly lead to confusion. You also want to look for low fees. The best debt consolidation companies will let you significantly reduce your debt while charging minimal fees.

We maintain strict standards of editorial integrity when writing our guides to help you make decisions with confidence. To help support our site, some of the products we highlight are from our partners and we may receive compensation when you visit their sites.

National Debt Relief

  • No upfront costs or fees
  • Quick qualification form
  • Free budget planning resources
  • Nearly 100% success rate
  • Will help manage wide variety of debt types

National Debt Relief offers a wide variety of debt services, including debt consolidation loans and debt settlement services. If you want to take a multi-pronged approach, settling some debt and consolidating others, this company can help. Considers debt as minimum as $7,500 with fees varying from 18% to 25%. National Debt Relief claims to reduce the debt by 50% and settle in 24 - 48 months.


No upfront fees. Can help with consolidation and settling debt. Expert in the space, helped resolve over $1 billion in debt since 2009.


Can affect your credit. Not available in all states. Not all debt qualifies - does not cover debt from IRS, mortgages, auto loans or any other secured debt.

Bottom Line

This company can help if you have a moderate amount of debt, and want help settling some and consolidating the rest.

Freedom Debt Relief

  • More than half a million clients enrolled
  • Over $8 billion in debt resolved since 2002
  • No fees until you see results
  • Resolve your debt in as little as 2 years
  • Will negotiate for a reduction of your debts

Freedom Debt Relief assists with settling debts of up to $100,000, meaning you can sort out almost any amount of debt. $7,500 is the minimum debt required to qualify and fees range from 15% - 25%. Freedom Debt Relief negotiates with creditors, creates a plan and a savings account to which you would deposit monthly payments. Once a settlement happens then Freedom will charge a fee for its service, so no upfront fees.


Settle large amounts of debt - up to $100,000. Creates a personalized debt management plan.


Won’t consolidate debts less than $10,000. Does not cover secured loans.

Bottom Line

Reduce large amounts of debt for a fraction of the amount owed in a fast and affordable manner.

Accredited Debt Relief

  • Free Consultation and quote
  • Negotiators work to lower your debts
  • No fees until your debts are resolved
  • Over the phone debt counseling available
  • Variety of debt relief options available

Accredited Debt Relief offers a complete plan to resolve debt. Provides debt consolidation, debt settlement and debt management services. Offers services to people with debt as low as $7,500 with no upfront fees. Takes 2 - 4 years on an average to settle the debt with a money back guarantee. Accredited Debt Relief does not offer debt consolidation loans directly. Instead, the company matches you with lenders who offer debt consolidation loans.


Minimum requirement of $1,000 debt. See offers from multiple lenders at once. Assigns a personal account manager.


Might pay higher prices than going to lenders directly. Services available only in 32 states.

Bottom Line

If you are looking for a one-stop shop to find the best debt management solution that fits your financial situation, Accredited is the company for you.


  • Free, no-obligation debt consultation
  • Collateral and good credit are not required
  • Reduce your monthly payments & amount owed
  • Team of experts ready to help you 24/7/365
  • Over $1 billion in debt resolved in 12 years of business

CreditAssociates offers a full suite of debt management services. You can consolidate as much as $100,000 in debt with CreditAssociates and take as long as six years to pay off. CreditAssociates claims to have helped tens of thousands of people turn their lives around in 24 - 36 months.


Get a low monthly payment with a long repayment term.


Longer repayment term results in higher interest costs.

Bottom Line

If you really need to shrink your monthly payment, CreditAssociates can help.

Consolidated Credit Counseling Services

  • Debt consolidation loans as small as $1,000
  • Reduce total credit card payments by up to 30-50%
  • Consolidate credit card bills into one payment
  • Lower interest rates to get out of debt faster
  • Avoid bankruptcy & protect your credit

Consolidated Credit Counseling Services offers debt consolidation loans as small as $1,000, making it easy to consolidate even a small amount of debt from multiple sources into one manageable loan.


Consolidate even a small amount of debt.


Does not offer debt settlement services.

Bottom Line

If you only have a small amount of debt, this can be a great company to work with.

Cambridge Credit Counseling Corp

  • Counselling services over phone or online
  • Average credit card interest rates reduced from 22% down to 8%
  • Average monthly credit card payments reduced by 25%
  • Average debt repayment in just 48 months or less
  • A 501(c)(3) not-for-profit agency with an A+ BBB rating

Cambridge Credit Counseling Corp is a non-profit organization that works to help people improve their financial wellness by getting out of debt. It offers a full suite of personalized debt management services, including consolidation loans.


Non-profit company that works for your benefit, not profit.


Can take some time to respond to requests for help.

Bottom Line

If you’re worried about a for-profit company taking advantage of you, Cambridge Credit Counseling Corp is a good alternative.

GreenPath Financial Wellness

  • Free debt counselling
  • Free credit report review
  • Offers bankruptcy counselling, student loan management and a housing counselling services
  • Automate your payments with Simple Payment Plan, an online payment service

GreenPath Financial Wellness offers a variety of financial counseling services, not just debt management services. The company can help you with nearly any financial question you find yourself asking. They consolidate your debt without a new loan, instead, asking you to pay them, and paying your creditors on your behalf.


Get help with all of your financial questions.


Cannot reduce the size of your payments or interest rates.

Bottom Line

If you can handle your current monthly payments, but just want to make things simpler, GreenPath Financial Wellness’ consolidation services can help.

Pacific Debt Inc

  • Settled over $200 million in debt since 2002
  • Free consultation
  • No fees until you get results
  • $7,500 minimum required debt
  • 24 - 48 month loan term
  • Fee from 15% to 25% of reduced debt
  • Accredited by Better Business Bureau with BBB A+ rating

Pacific Debt Inc is a company focused on providing a variety of debt solutions. While the company does offer debt consolidation loans, it tends to focus more heavily on debt settlement services.


The company can provide information on settlement but offers consolidation loans as well.


May try to steer you towards settlement, even if you want to consolidate.

Bottom Line

This company can help if you’re considering a combination of settlement and consolidation.

CountryWide Debt Relief

  • $5,000 minimum debt considered
  • Offers a 12 to 60 month repayment program
  • Charges a fee of 18% of settled debt
  • No credit required to qualify
  • Free consultation and no upfront fees
  • A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau

CountryWide Debt Relief helps people who have taken on a lot of debt and damaged their credit score. The company regularly works with people with poor credit, so nearly anyone can qualify.


Qualify even with poor credit.


High interest rates due to focus on poor credit consumers.

Bottom Line

A good choice for people who struggle to qualify elsewhere.

United Debt Counselors

  • Creates a program tailored to your situation
  • Face to face meeting with Nationwide Field Representatives
  • Settlement offers normally around 30%-40% of what is owed
  • Helps create a Special Purpose Savings Account to payoff the settlements
  • Automatic draft of an agreed upon monthly payment program

United Debt Counselors does not offer debt consolidation loans. Instead, the company opens a new bank account that you must make a monthly deposit to. Then, the company makes loan payments on your behalf. In this way, you consolidate multiple payments into one. The company also focuses on helping you settle for less than you owe.


Settle for less than you owe and get one easy payment option for your debt.


Debt settlement can hurt your credit score.

Bottom Line

If you have too much debt to pay in full, this service can simplify your payments and reduce your debts.

Compare Company Features

Lender Minimum Debt Maximum Debt How Long To Pay Off Features
National Debt Relief $7,500 $100,000 Up to 4 years Also offers debt settlement service
Freedom Debt Relief $7,500 $100,000 Up to 4 years Can consolidate your debt without impacting your credit
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services N/A $75,000 Up to 4 years Considers debt as small as $1,000
Accredited Debt Relief $7,500 Varies Up to 4 years Matches you to other lenders who provide debt consolidation loans
Cambridge Credit Counseling Corp N/A $35,000 Up to 5 years Non-profit organization working for your benefit rather than profit
CreditAssociates N/A $100,000 Up to 6 years Customize your repayment period between 1 and 6 years
Greenpath Financial Wellness $10,000 N/A N/A Does not offer loans. Instead, consolidates your loans into one payment by paying on your behalf.
Pacific Debt Inc $10,000 $35,000 Up to 4 years Focused on debt settlement rather than consolidation
CountryWide Debt Relief $10,000 $100,000+ Up to 4 years People with bad credit can still qualify
United Debt Counselors N/A N/A N/A Focuses on debt settlement, but allows you to consolidate by paying on your behalf

How To Choose The Best Debt Consolidation Company

To choose the best debt settlement or debt consolidation company, start by making sure the company you’re working with is reputable. Many debt consolidation lenders are predatory, and target people who are under financial stress. If you’re confident that the lenders you’re considering are legitimate, try to choose an option with the lowest total cost.

Once you’ve chosen a lender, you need to understand the debt consolidation process. You might be wondering, "How does debt consolidation work?"

First, you fill out the application and enroll in a debt management service from the company of your choice. The debt settlement company will reach out to you, evaluate your situation and creates a plan that suits your needs. The company will negotiate with each individual creditor and tries to bring down the total amount owed. A special savings account will then be created to which you will be contributing monthly payments that meet the payoff terms. If needed, the debt relief company might also assign a personal account manager to help you with the process.

The features that matter the most when comparing services are the maximum debt that you can settle, the time it takes, and the fees. You want low fees and rates, and a maximum debt large enough to cover all your existing debts. Debt consolidation fees an often be low enough to save you money when compared to credit card interest rates. In fact, this can be one of the best ways to consolidate credit card debt as you’re not doing something like putting your home at risk by using a HELOC, but you’re still saving money.

Debt settlement service are often expensive and must be considered as a last option. Credit score is often affected as you default on your payments and lowering the debt than what you originally owe is not always guaranteed. In light of all the debt settlement scams, it is highly advised to research every option before considering a debt consolidation service and get a second opinion before making the final decision.

12 Necessary Facts To Know About Debt Consolidation Companies

  1. Is Debt Settlement Really Worth It?

    Yes. In most cases a good debt settlement company can negotiate with the creditor and bring down what you owe.

  2. What is better debt consolidation or debt settlement?

    There’s no one answer. Consolidation can improve your credit, but you still pay the full amount you owe. Settlement can save you money by reducing your debt, but your credit may suffer.

  3. Can you negotiate with credit card companies?

    Yes, you can often negotiate with credit card companies to settle your debts for less than you owe. This may have a negative effect on your credit.

  4. Do consolidation loans hurt your credit score?

    In the short term, debt consolidation loans might lower your score. In the long term, paying off your debt will improve your score, so the loan can help.

  5. Is it smart to consolidate debt?

    It’s smart to consolidate your debt if doing so can help you avoid missed payments or bankruptcy. It’s also smart if it saves you money.

  6. How can I consolidate my credit card debt without hurting my credit?

    Some companies structure their debt consolidation in a way that won’t affect your credit. Remember, in the long term, consolidating and paying your loans off will help your credit.

  7. Can I get a debt consolidation loan with poor credit?

    Yes, you can get a debt consolidation loan with poor credit. However, you might have trouble finding one with low fees and interest rates.

  8. Can I consolidate only one loan?

    You can consolidate multiple loans. In fact, the point of debt consolidation loans is to turn multiple debts into one.

  9. How long does debt settlement stay on your credit report?

    Debt settlement stays on your credit report for the same amount of time as other debts. Usually, this is ten years after you settle and pay the loan off.

  10. What are the risks of debt consolidation?

    The biggest risk of debt consolidation is that you’ll miss payments on your consolidated loan, or take on more debt because you feel like you have more money.

  11. Who can qualify for a debt settlement?

    Nearly anyone can qualify for a debt settlement , but the debt management services in general are aimed towards people who have a bigger debt and can’t afford monthly payments anymore.

  12. How much does it cost to consolidate your debt?

    Consolidating your credit isn’t free. Many lenders charge a percentage of the amount you borrow as a fee when you take out a debt consolidation loan. You’ll also pay interest charges on the new loan.

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The information we provide and the analysis we share is always free. So, how do we survive? We get compensated by our partners, which may sometimes influence the products or services we review and the order in which they appear. Our suggestions and guidance are unbiased and are based only on our thorough research.