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There are three ways you can repair your credit: (1) Do It Yourself, (2) Hire a Credit Repair Company, and (3) Purchase Credit Repair Software. As you can imagine, each option will vary in cost, time, and level of effort.
To provide clarity to the issue at hand and to help you answer the overarching question, “how much does credit repair cost?” Our team researched each option, ran the numbers, and found out how much credit repair costs.
And the fact that one in five people have an error on their credit report, this article is more relevant than ever.
By the end, you will know which credit repair option costs the most and which one is the most advantageous.
Let’s Dive in.
Different Type of Credit Repair Costs
Whichever strategy you choose to repair your credit, it will come with some sort of cost. Whether it is your time or money, these are both two variables you need to consider.
#1. DIY Credit Repair Cost
Believe it or not, you can repair your credit yourself. This is the biggest myth when it comes to repairing your credit. Most people think you can’t, but you absolutely can. However, DIY credit repair takes time, the willingness to learn, and sheer determination.
The best part about repairing your credit yourself is that it is FREE. But it will take quite a bit of time as you will need to learn the ins-and-outs of credit repair. This includes becoming familiar with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), and the Credit Repair Organization Act (CROA).
Additionally, you will need to obtain a copy of your credit report, review it, identify negative items to remove, and file disputes with your creditors and or the credit bureaus. To assist you in our efforts, our team put together three awesome guides to kick-starting your credit repair journey.
- How to Dispute an Error on Your Credit Report
- How to Dispute Your TransUnion Credit Report
- How to Dispute Your Experian Credit Report
Before you proceed with a DIY credit repair approach, read our guides. They highlight the level of effort required and will walk you through step-by-step what you need to do.
#2. Hiring a Credit Repair Company Cost
Due to the complexity and time commitment required to repair your credit yourself, most people turn to a credit repair company. However, the best credit repair companies are not cheap, nor can they guarantee results. Expect to pay between $50 – $200 per month for their elite services.
Working with a skilled profession does come with its benefits. When you hire a credit repair company, they take the matter into their own hands. This means all you must do is pay the monthly fee, sit back, and relax. The credit repair company will do the rest.
But this still begs the question, how much do credit repair companies cost? Traditionally, credit repair companies charge a one-time upfront fee and a monthly fee after that. Depending on which company you choose will dictate how much you pay.
To provide you with a clear picture, we put together a table that highlights the monthly fee and upfront fee charged by the most popular credit repair companies.
|Company:||One-Time Fee:||Monthly Fee:|
|Sky Blue Credit Repair||$79||$79|
|The Credit People||$19||$79|
|The Credit Pros||$0||$119|
|Ovation Credit Services||$89||$79+|
|AMB Credit Consultants||$149||$99|
|Pyramid Credit Repair||$0||$99|
|Pinnacle Credit Management||$199||$99|
Depending on the severity of your credit situation, hiring a credit repair company makes sense. If your credit report contains a handful of negative items, then it is worth the money. But if your report only has one or two negative items, you can dispute these yourself and save hundreds of dollars.
So, pull your credit report and see how many inquiries you need to dispute. And if you are looking for tailored guidance and a free credit consultation then give Credit Saint a phone call. They are our favorite credit repair company due to their transparency, 90-day money-back guarantee, and affordable packages.
#3. Credit Repair Software Costs
The third option is credit repair software. But let me be honest, credit repair software is pretty much useless. It does nothing besides elaborate on what steps you need to take to file disputes.
Additionally, it may provide information about what is considered a negative mark on a credit report. I’ll save you the hassle, here are some common derogatory marks:
- Late Payments
- Student Loans
- Hard Inquiries
- Collection Accounts
- Charge Offs
Depending on what package you purchase, credit repair software will cost you anywhere between $100 – $1,000. It is not a monthly fee, but rather one large upfront investment.
Cheap credit repair software will just come with tutorials and sample dispute letters. In contrast, the more expensive options will come with exclusive templates and access to credit repair experts. Again, I would only use credit repair software if I were starting a credit repair business.
How Can I Repair My Credit for Free?
The only way to repair your credit for free is if you do it yourself. While this may seem intimidating at first, it is quite easy and straightforward. And ever since the credit bureaus rolled out online disputes, repairing your credit has never been easier. Follow the steps we outline below to repair your credit for free.
Step 1: Obtain Copy of Your Credit Report
The first thing you need to do is obtain a copy of your credit report. By law, you are entitled to one free credit report. Request your credit report at annualcreditreport.com and Experian.
After you receive your credit reports, you need to sit down and review all three. Sift through each one line-by-line and identify negative items and or errors that are holding back your credit score.
Common credit report errors:
- Misspelt Name
- Accounts that don’t belong to you
- Wrong account numbers
- Incorrect balances
- Duplicate accounts
- Payments reported incorrectly
While these may mean nothing to you right now, they will as soon as they begin to bring down your credit score. Take note of each inaccurately, outdated, or duplicated item that appears on your credit report.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) states that credit bureaus, creditors, and debt collectors are required to remove these three categories of items from your credit report.
Related: Is Credit Repair Legal?
Step 2: Dispute Each Error
Now that you have a list compiled of errors that appear on your credit report, it is time to file some disputes. Do not be intimidated by this process. Each link below will take you to all three credit bureaus online dispute page.
Simply dispute your error online. The process is hassle-free and quick. Make sure to say thanks to the credit bureaus. Back in the old days, you had to write a letter and mail it to them.
Step 3: Follow Up with the Credit Bureaus
The credit bureaus have 30-days to investigate and respond to your dispute. If they cannot provide sufficient proof to validate the debt or derogatory mark, then by law, they must remove it from your credit report.
If they do find sufficient proof, then you will have to wait for the negative item to fall of your credit report. This can take up to 7-years.
Step 4: Re-File Disputes
Maybe you made a mistake when you filed your first dispute. If this is the case, the credit bureaus will reach out to you and will have you re-file your dispute.
How Credit Repair Can Improve Your Credit Score
Undeniably, credit repair will improve your credit score. It takes time, though. Repairing your credit does not happen overnight. If you leverage the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and partner with a credit repair company, then your chances of success will only increase.
But that does not mean a DIY approach to credit repair will not raise your credit score. There a few simple credit repair strategies you can employ to raise your credit score. Here are a few reasons how credit repair can improve your credit score.
- Clean Credit Report: By identifying and removing all items that are inaccurately reported, outdated, or duplicated, your credit score will increase.
- Build credit Properly: Whether you work with a credit repair company or repair your credit yourself, you will pick up on the right strategies to build your credit over time. You’ll be armed with a new level of knowledge.
- Remove Outdated Items: Debts that are outdated but still on your credit report are bringing down your credit score. Removing these are easy as long as the debt is actually outdated.
- Debt Validation: If a creditor or credit bureau cannot validate (or verify) a debt belongs to you, they must remove it from your credit report.
- Wrong Name or SSN: The credit bureaus process millions of consumer credit reports. It is easy for them to type the wrong number or misspell a name. However, having the wrong identity associated with your credit report is not good. And this makes sense. What if the person you are mistaken for continues to miss payments, defaults on a loan, or files for bankruptcy? This is not good, so it is best to get this squared away immediately.
- Goodwill Letters: Writing a goodwill letter is easy. In it, include why you were late on a payment and if you encountered any excruciating circumstances, such as a family emergency or recent job law off. If the creditor or credit bureau if forgiving, they may remove the negative mark from your credit report. However, this is rare but still worth a shot.
Again, there are more strategies you can employ to repair your credit. If you want to dive deep into the details of credit repair, then I would strongly consider hiring a credit repair company.
They will educate along the way, so you can replicate their strategies in the future if you run into another poor credit situation.
Credit Repair Cost FAQs
Is it Worth Paying Someone to Fix Your Credit?
It is worth paying someone to fix your credit if you are crunched for time and want tailored guidance. A credit repair company will review your credit report, create an action plan, and will file disputes all on your behalf. Like we said earlier, they take the matter into their own hands, and get right to work. In this case, it does make sense to pay someone to fix your credit.
However, if you are willing to learn, then you can repair your credit yourself. Remember, a credit repair company cannot do anything you can’t do yourself.
Can You Fix Your Credit on Your Own?
Yes, you can successfully fix your credit on your own. You will need to pull your credit report, review it for negative items, and file disputes with either your creditor or the credit bureaus. There is not much more to it. In some instances, you can send a debt validation letter or a goodwill letter. These are two advanced credit repair techniques that anyone can do themselves as well.
Bottom Line: How Much Does Credit Repair Cost?
Repairing your credit will be free if you do it yourself. However, if you hire a credit repair company or credit repair software, then be ready to pay.
These two credit repair options will cost you potentially hundreds of dollars per month. The most popular credit repair companies have attracted a legion of fans due to their superior services, timeliness, and proven results.
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