Consolidated Credit Review: Is Credit Counseling Right for You?

If the payments are piling up and your debt situation seems out of control, a nonprofit credit counseling firm may be able to help. Consolidated Credit is a top option with an extensive track record and stellar customer reviews.

Featured Alternative: DebtHammer

Our Top Pick for Help With Debt
  • Can help with many types of debt, including payday and credit card
  • Extremely transparent process, no shadiness
  • Friendly and helpful customer support – no judgment

Consolidated Credit: What You Need to Know

Consolidated Credit is a Florida-based non-profit credit counseling service. The company has been in business for 29 years and claims to have served over 10.2 million people. The company is a member of the Financial Counseling Association of America (FCAA).

Consolidated Credit at a Glance 

Do they offer a free consultation?Yes
How to get startedCall (855) 338-0971 or use the contact form or live chat window on the website.
FeesDebt management plan fees average $40/month and are capped at $79/month.
How it worksStart with a free financial counseling session. Your counselor will review your finances and your options.
Who owns Consolidated CreditMr. Gary Herman, President
Mr. Hilton Sher, Vice President
Ms. Brenda Horner, Director of Customer Service
Company address and phone number5701 W Sunrise Blvd # 200, Plantation, FL 33313-6269
(855) 715-4431
BBB ratingAccredited, A+ rating, 4.92 of 5 stars from 150 reviews
Trustpilot rating4.7 of 5 stars from 8,777 reviews
Minimum debt managedNot specified
Noteworthy featuresFree credit counseling
Debt management plans
Financial education
HUD-certified housing counseling (for Florida residents)
Specialized assistance for military personnel and veterans.

Consolidated Credit provides the following services:

  • Free credit counseling
  • Debt management plans
  • Financial education
  • HUD-certified housing counseling (for Florida residents)
  • Specialized assistance for military personnel and veterans

READ MORE: How does credit counseling work?

How Consolidated Credit Works

If you contact Consolidated Credit about a debt problem, your first step will be a free, confidential counseling session with a certified counselor. The counselor will review your situation and your options in detail and help you build a strategy to manage your debt.

Your counselor may recommend a debt management plan. If you take this option you will make one monthly payment to Consolidated Credit, and they will pay your creditors. They will also negotiate with your creditors for reduced interest rates and better terms.

Debt management plans can only accommodate unsecured debts, like credit card debt, personal loans, medical debt, and payday loans. If your debt problems come from secured debts – like a mortgage, car loans, or pawnshop loans – or student loans, a debt management plan probably won’t help. A free credit counseling session could still be helpful.

Consolidated Credit provides housing counseling to Florida residents, with programs tailored for first-time homebuyers, homeowners, and renters.

They also offer a wealth of financial education material, including free webinars, workshops, financial education videos and articles, and financial calculators.

READ MORE: A complete guide to debt relief programs

What makes Consolidated Credit Stand Out

Consolidated Credit offers services focused on helping American consumers take control of their debts.

Credit Counseling

The credit counseling service gets extremely positive reviews from customers, who consistently state that the counseling sessions are helpful, professional, and non-judgmental. It’s free and there’s no obligation.

Your counselor will need to know the details of your income, household expenses, and your debts, including the interest rates, terms, and monthly payments. The session will be most helpful if this information is complete and accurate.

Debt Management Plans

If you decide that a debt management plan is your best option, your unsecured debts will be consolidated into a single monthly payment. You’ll pay Consolidated Credit, and they will pay your creditors. Your counselor will negotiate with your creditors for reduced rates.

The company states that on average, monthly payments are reduced by up to 30% to 50% and that average interest rates are reduced to below 11%. A typical plan takes 36 to 60 months to complete. 

You may be required to close credit cards and avoid taking on new debt until your plan is complete. There may be a small initial drop in your credit score if you close accounts but the overall impact on your credit should be positive to neutral.

You will pay a fee for this service. The fee is determined by your state of residence and your debt situation. The average fee is $40 per month and fees are capped at $79 per month. If your monthly payment is reduced by 30% to 50%, this could be well worth it.

Debt management plans require persistence and discipline, but they can be a very effective way to clear debts without damaging your credit.

READ MORE: Debt management vs. debt settlement

Housing Counseling

Consolidated Credit is a HUD-Certified housing counseling provider. Their housing programs fall into three broad categories.

  • For first-time homebuyers, counseling aims to prepare buyers for shopping for a home, finding financing, and closing a deal.
  • For homeowners who are facing challenges with their mortgages, counseling provides options for avoiding foreclosure and getting back to good standing.
  • For renters, counseling aims at helping avoid eviction even if you are having trouble paying rent.

The company website indicates that housing counseling is limited to Florida residents.

Help for Service Members and Veterans

Consolidated Credit operates a special program for veterans and active service members in cooperation with Southern Command, ArmyOneSource, and the Department of Defense. 

If you’re an active or former service member with debt problems, this program is worth looking into.

Financial Education

Consolidated Credit emphasizes financial education, helping debtors understand how they got into trouble and how to avoid slipping back into trouble. Their website provides a wealth of educational videos, articles, webinars, and workshops.

These materials are available for free to clients and non-clients alike.

READ MORE: Got $50,000 in credit card debt? Here’s how to pay it off

How to Sign Up 

You’ll start with a free counseling session to explore your options. There are several ways to set this up.

Before you speak to a counselor, take some time to break down a complete list of your income, household expenses, and debts, including their interest rates, terms, and monthly payments. Your counselor will need this information to help you effectively.

The Difference Between Credit Counseling and Debt Settlement

There are two main types of companies in the debt relief space.

  • Credit counseling companies are nonprofits. They work with counseling and debt management plans to help debtors clear their debts without destroying their credit. These plans take time and you will pay your debts. They charge a flat fee.
  • Debt settlement companies are for-profit businesses. They negotiate to settle your debts for less than you owe. This is a faster process but it will do severe damage to your credit. You will pay a percentage of the amount settled.

Consolidated Credit is a nonprofit credit counseling company. You will receive free counseling, and you may be offered the option of a debt management plan. The company will negotiate better rates and terms, but they will not settle your debts.

If you’re considering the debt settlement option, remember that settled debt must be reported to the IRS as income.

READ MORE: How does debt settlement work?

Is Consolidated Credit a Scam?

Consolidated is a highly reputable credit counseling firm with an extensive track record and generally excellent customer reviews. We can find no record of any legal or regulatory action against the company.

Pros and cons


  • Free initial counseling
  • Effective debt management plans
  • Stellar customer service
  • Accredited member of the FCAA and the American Association for Debt Resolution


  • The fee for debt management plans is on the high side
  • No guarantees
  • Debt Management Plans can’t help you with secured loans or student loans.

Who Should Consider Consolidated Credit

Here are some signs that you might need a credit counseling service like Consolidated Credit. 

  • Is your debt overwhelming?
  • Are you struggling to keep up with your monthly payments?
  • Are you trying to avoid filing for bankruptcy?
  • Are you trying to avoid handling debt settlement on your own?
  • Are your debt problems caused mainly by unsecured debt (credit card debt, medical debt, personal loans, payday loans)?

If you answered “yes” to one or more of those questions, a call to Consolidated Credit could be the start of a solution.

READ MORE: What are the best debt settlement companies?

Who Should Not Consider Consolidated Credit

Almost anyone with debt problems could benefit from a credit counseling session. There are still some people that might not fit well with a company like Consolidated Credit.

  • People who don’t want to pay for a debt management plan.
  • People with a manageable amount of debt.
  • Those who want a fast reduction in their debt load.
  • Those who are dealing mainly with student loans or secured loans (mortgages, car loans, or pawnshop loans).

If your priority is to get your debts reduced, you may be better off with a debt settlement company. Be aware that your credit score will suffer significant damage.

To learn more about how credit counseling affects your credit score, check out this video:

The Website

The Consolidated Credit website contains a large amount of information on the company’s services and on personal finance in general. It’s professional and effectively laid out, but if you aren’t sure what you’re looking for the sheer amount of information could be confusing.

If you’re sure that you need counseling your best move might be to simply call the contact number: it’s free and there’s no commitment so there’s nothing to lose.

If you’re looking to learn more about credit, budgeting, and personal finance, you can browse the site for hours and learn a great deal.

Customer Service

You can reach customer service by phone, email, or through the website’s member portal. Customer reviews consistently state that service is friendly, professional, and easy to reach. 

Is Consolidated Credit Trustworthy?

Any time you provide personal information to an outside party, there is some risk of a data breach: even extremely sophisticated institutions have suffered breaches.

Consolidated Credit has operated for 29 years with no reported data breaches. They are not immune, but the risk has to be considered very low.

What are Customers Saying?

Consolidated Credit is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and has an A+ rating, indicating a high degree of responsiveness to customer complaints. Their BBB page shows an average of 4.92 of a possible 5 stars from 150 customer reviews.

Consolidated Credit has an average of 4.7 of 5 stars from 8,777 reviews on Trustpilot. 

The overwhelmingly positive reviews rave about Consolidated Credit’s customer service, saying that it is highly professional and easily accessible. Multiple reviews state that they never felt that the counselors were judgmental or critical, and there was a real commitment to helping. 

The Bottom Line

If your debts have you backed into a corner and you aren’t sure which way to turn, credit counseling is a great move to take. It’s free, there’s no obligation, and even if you don’t proceed to a debt management plan, you’ll come away with a better handle on your situation.

Consolidated Credit is a highly reputable nonprofit credit counseling provider. If you’re in the market for credit counseling or a debt management plan, they deserve a place on your shortlist.


Why Would Consolidated Credit Hurt Your Credit Score?

If you adopt a debt management plan, you may be required to close credit card accounts. This could reduce your credit history and increase your credit utilization, causing a short-term drop in your credit score. If you stay with the plan, the impact on your credit score should be positive.

What Kind of Debts Can Consolidated Credit Handle?

The debt management plans offered by Consolidated Credit are designed to consolidate unsecured debts, like credit card debt, medical debt, personal loans and payday loans. They will not include most student loans or secured loans like mortgages or car loans.

How does Consolidated Credit Compare to Debt Settlement Companies?

Consolidated Credit is a nonprofit credit counseling company offering counseling and debt management plans. If you take on a debt management plan, you will pay your debts, but you will make one monthly payment and your interest rates will be reduced. You will pay a flat fee.
Debt settlement companies are for-profit firms. They will negotiate to settle your debts for less than you owe. Your debt load will be lowered but your credit score will be damaged and the amount forgiven will be taxed as income. You will pay a percentage of the amount forgiven.

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