Looking for the best credit repair service
The credit repair industry has become a crowded place. Recent economic turmoil has led to increased lending restrictions that have made having a good credit score far more important than in previous years. Finding themselves no longer being considered good candidates for loans because their credit score isn't as good as it now needs to be, thousands are turning to credit repair services for help. Eager to cash in on the trend, new credit repair services are popping up all the time claiming to be experts at repairing bad credit.
With so many new an inexperienced credit repair organizations entering the market, many of which are simply turnkey credit repair businesses using a third party software solution to power their service, it becomes difficult to determine which companies can be trusted with your credit reports. To help separate the best credit repair services from the amateurs trying to make a quick buck, here are some tips for identifying a quality credit repair provider:
- Look for experience -- Setting up a credit repair company is remarkably easy. All a person needs is a website and a few hundred dollars to pay for a software package. Staying in the business and producing results is more difficult. The best credit repair services usually have an established history of helping people which not only indicates a stable business, but it also is a sign that the company operates within the confines of the law since most shady credit repair companies have a short lifespan.
A credit repair company's BBB report will show how long the company has been in business, although not necessarily how long they have been providing credit repair services. If the company does not have a BBB listing, it may be a red flag since the company may be very new or flying under the radar. When you are unable to determine how long a company has been around, you can try performing a WHOIS lookup of their website URL to see how long it has been since the domain was registered, but odds are if it requires that much work to track down the information, you're probably better off looking elsewhere.
Lexington Law has been providing credit repair services since 1991, and has been online since 2000. In that time, the firm has helped over 1 million clients remove millions of negative items from their credit reports.
- Look for an offline presence -- The Internet is a great vehicle for commerce, but the process of working to repair your credit reports is more effective when performed offline. Established credit repair companies usually have a physical place of operations that you can use as a guide to how stable the company is. Google Maps or some other satellite imagery service is a great tool for checking out the company's home office. Grab the company's address, pull up a map and see if the company has their own building, is headquartered in an office complex, rents out a space in a strip mall, or has the mailing address of a personal residence.
Lexington Law is headquartered in a 50,000 sq. ft. campus located in North Salt Lake, Utah where clients and prospective clients are welcome to visit our main office at any time during regular office hours.
- Look at pricing and payment options -- Signed into law in 1996, the Credit Repair Organizations Act sets guidelines credit repair companies must adhere to. One of these is to only accept payment for services after the agreed upon services have been performed. This was put in place to protect people from fraudulent companies who would charge large upfront fees and never provide the expected credit repair services.
As a result of this, you should avoid credit repair companies who require an upfront payment (yes, there are still many in operation despite this regulation).
In addition to finding out when and how much you will be expected to pay, make note of the payment options. Most reputable online companies will provide at a minimum the option to pay via credit card on their website or over the phone. Additional payment methods may also be accepted.
Be wary of companies who only accept checks or money orders as you do not have the same protections in place to recover your money if something goes wrong. Also watch out for companies who use a third party payment system on their website such as PayPal as this can be indicative of a fly by night credit repair service. Finally, as with any online transactions, when submitting payment information online, make sure the webpage is secured. If not, your personal information could be intercepted. Before entering your credit card or Social Security number on a web page, make sure the address of the page starts with "https" and your browser displays a padlock or similar icon indicating the connection is secure. Click here for more information about checking if a web page is secure.
Lexington Law only charges for services after they have been performed.
For payment method, Lexington Law accepts credit card or automatic draft from client's checking or savings account. When enrolling online, a client's information is secured by 128-bit encryption.