Credit Solutions Review

creditsolutions

Credit Solutions of America, Inc is based in Richardson, Texas and is the largest and most popular debt settlement company operating today. This distinction is determined by the number of clients they have and the total amount of debt that they have settled as compared to other debt settlement companies.

Here are some quick facts about Credit Solutions:

Founder: Doug Van Arsdale
Type: Private company
Employees: 950+
Founded: 2003
BBB Rating: F

Credit Solutions has been in business 6 years, and has settled over 300 million dollars in debt for it’s customers in the last 12 months.  The company is very involved in the community, is a member of the Dallas Chamber of Commerce, and has won numerous local business awards and has been named one of the best companies to work for in Dallas.  I only mention these thing to help convey the fact that Credit Solutions is not some fly-by-night debt settlement company.

Customer Service

One of the biggest factors in hiring a debt settlement company is their customer service. When it all comes down to it, you need to actually talk to someone to 1) get the process explained to you, 2) answer any questions you may have, and 3) calm your fears and give you a roadmap of the next steps.

On the plus side, Credit Solutions has a fairly good record in terms of customer service. In 2008, they were awarded the Stevie Award from the American Business Awards for the “Best Customer Services Department in Financial Services”. What does that mean? It means that when you call, you will get you questions answered, 24/7. Round the clock customer service is particularly rare for a company in any industry, and I haven’t seen it in any debt settlement company other than Credit Solutions. It shows that they care about their clients and they are not trying to hide from you.

Credit Solutions maintains a 99.4% customer satisfaction rating and won the Best Customer Services Department in Financial Services Award for 2008, a Stevie Award from the American Business Awards.

However, the internet is littered with complaints about the company,  from being sued by their creditors, to lawsuits against Credit Solutions for fraud and misleading consumers.

The Program

The program is the standard one, where you put a monthly amount into a trust account, and save up for a settlement.  Once you have enough for your first settlement, Credit Solutions will negotiate a settlement with your creditor.  If you have more than one account to be settled, you then begin saving for the next settlement.

Fees and Charges

Fees are not stated outright, but from various sources, I gather they charge the typical 15% of the debt owed

Refund Policy

Pro-rated refund on fees.

Website Experience

Video section impressive, lots of good information, leaves the impression you’re dealing with professionals.

Customer Issues

There have been over 1600 complaints against Credit Solutions that have been filed with the Better Business Bureau in Dallas, Texas over a 3 year period. All but 6 of them have been resolved. With a company that has helped over 250,000 clients since 2003, the complaint level remains relatively low.

Credit Solutions has also made a practice of searching the web for complaints about their service and has resolved or made an effort to resolve each one. Rip-Off Report, a consumer complaint web site, has given Credit Solutions a positive rating in resolving customer complaints that were posted there. They label the amount of complaints, “a tiny percentage of their clients and is SIGNIFICANTLY well below industry standards for their business.” The company recently revamped their customer service process and opened it 24/7 to be able to address questions and issues from customers.

Overall



Credit Solutions, despite some complaints, remains the largest and most popular debt settlement company out there, however we think you are better off going with a smaller debt settlement company, one that will probably be better suited to give more attentive and personal service than a huge corporation.

Check out our recommended debt settlement companies.

Comments

  1. The BBB rating for this company is “F” as of today, June 27, 2009. Also, please note the following, which I have copied from the BBB website:

    “On May 19, 2009 the New York Attorney General filed suit against Credit Solutions of America alleging deceptive business practices and false advertising in connection with their debt settlement service. The lawsuit seeks to obtain restitution and damages for consumers and to prevent the company from engaging in deceptive practices. The case is pending.

    On March 26, 2009 the Attorney General of Texas filed suit in the 261st District Court of Travis County against Credit Solutions of America, Inc. Charges filed indicate the business violated the Deceptive Trade Practices Act and has engaged in false, deceptive and misleading acts. Specifically, the charges indicate that the business; failed to negotiate with creditors for most accounts entered into its program, failed to reduce clients’ debt balances by 40-60% as stated, deceived clients about the possible negative consequences such as fees, fines, lawsuits and negative credit reporting, and used misleading selling practices. The state’s enforcement action seeks an injunction against Credit Solutions of America, Inc. that will prevent the company from continuing to unlawfully promise services which it does not deliver. The case is pending”

    • thanks for posting that! They are rated a ” F ” for a reason. I know, as I was fooled by them. Also reported them.. To help other consumers…

      Thanks for posting the truth…..

  2. I lost my job in March 2009 and joined Credit Solutions in June 2009 after trouble paying all my credit card bills. To only have to pay/ save $400 a month instead over $1,000 I was currently paying on credit card debt sounded like the right decision to make (the only decision in my mind at the time). The first six months of the program was the hardest. I was receiving creditor calls, letters, etc. (someone even showed up at my door) and didn’t have enough money saved to make any settlement offers. Plus, I wasn’t sure what Credit Solutions was supposed to be doing on my behalf since I stopped paying my monthly credit card bills. I couldn’t understand why people kept calling. This was so disheartening.

    Then, after 6 months an offer came in from a credit card I owed over $5K on. It was a great offer and I was able to settle my first account for less than half of what I actually owed. I finally had faith in this program I had been buying into for 6 months. A few months later I paid off two more accounts (thanks to Christmas money from family). Recently I was receiving calls from one of my creditors, but it was just sold off to a third party, and Credit Solutions knew about it before I did and updated it for me on my online account. Since this account was sent to a collection agency, I have stopped receiving the annoying phone calls. So, I know that Credit Solutions has been in contact with them and they know I am on this program. I will continue to save and hopefully I will be done in another year (which seems like forever in my mind). If all goes as planned and I continue to save, I will have paid off all my credit card debt in 2 years. I was on a 4 year plan originally with Credit Solution, which at the time was better than the 35 years it was going to take if I continued to pay minimum payments.

    The only reason I write this, is because I was one of the confused Credit Solution customers reading all these horrible reviews and wondering if I had made a huge mistake. Well, I am halfway through my debt, so I personally think it has been worth it. Having someone on my side to help me when I had questions while making the negotiations on my behalf has been worth their service fee. Plus I have already saved twice as much as their total service fee and I still have more to save when I settle the remaining accounts. It is not easy, and yes your credit score will be destroyed (I am afraid to look at mine), but in my situation, it seemed like the only way to get out of debt. Paying the rent and buying food for the kids seemed more important than my credit score at the time.

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