Best Debt Counseling Services 2018

Debt counseling advisor

If you’re swimming in an overwhelming pool of debt, you’re certainly not alone. According to a LendingTree, which analyzed data from the Federal Reserve, Americans owe more than a quarter of their annual income to debt. What’s more, consumer debt—debt from credit cards, student loans, personal and auto loans—is set to soar to a staggering $4 trillion in debt by the end of 2018.

Are you feeling stressed and anxious from debt? If so, you may want to consider debt counseling services. “Debt counseling usually involves a legal intervention between a consumer and their creditors,” explains Aoife Gaffney, a certified money coach and qualified financial adviser of Prudence Moneypenny Coaching. “It stops the stress and removes the shame.”

Reasons to Work with a Debt Counseling Agency

According to Gaffney, working with a debt counseling agency can do the following:

  • Review your credit report;
  • Helps put sustainable, realistic payment plans in place;
  • Helps consolidate your debt into one payment;
  • Reduce monthly payments;
  • Can possibly renegotiate interest rates;
  • Opens up the lines of communication between creditors and consumers; and
  • Serve as an impartial intermediary between a consumer and their creditors to potentially help stop the phone calls, letters, emails and possible court proceedings.

Are you looking for nonprofit credit counseling and debt counseling options? Here are a few key things to look for:

Tips on Choosing a Debt Counseling Service

While shopping around for a debt counseling service, look for government funded and/or backed services. “There are private companies out there, and I am sure their intentions are good,” says Gaffney. “However, if you’re already struggling, there is no point in adding extra financial burden to yourself.”

Other questions to ask yourself when looking for a debt counseling service:

  • Is there a physical office?
  • What other services and resources does it offer?
  • What is its mission statement?
  • Is it a funded service? If so, by whom?
  • Can you meet someone in person?
  • Is the agency reputable? Search for reviews ahead of time.
  • What are the fees involved? Are they one-time, or ongoing?

Money Management International can help you with your debt situation. For more information about debt counseling and our other nonprofit services, contact us today.

Tagged in Debt strategies

A corporate headshot of Jackie Lam.

Jackie Lam is an L.A.-based personal finance writer who is passionate about helping creatives with their finances. Her work has appeared in Forbes, Mental Floss, Business Insider, and Bankrate. She's also a 2022 Financial Literacy and Education in Communities (FLEC) award winner. You can find her at

  • Better Business Bureau A+ rating Better Business Bureau
    MMI is proud to have achieved an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), a nonprofit organization focused on promoting and improving marketplace trust. The BBB investigates charges of fraud against both consumers and businesses, sets standards for truthfulness in advertising, and evaluates the trustworthiness of businesses and charities, providing a score from A+ (highest) to F (lowest).
  • Financial Counseling Association of America Financial Counseling Association of America
    MMI is a proud member of the Financial Counseling Association of America (FCAA), a national association representing financial counseling companies that provide consumer credit counseling, housing counseling, student loan counseling, bankruptcy counseling, debt management, and various financial education services.
  • Trustpilot Trustpilot
    MMI is rated as “Excellent” (4.9/5) by reviewers on Trustpilot, a global, online consumer review platform dedicated to openness and transparency. Since 2007, Trustpilot has received over 116 million customer reviews for nearly 500,000 different websites and businesses. See what others are saying about the work we do.
  • Department of Housing and Urban Development - Equal Housing Opportunity Department of Housing and Urban Development
    MMI is certified by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to provide consumer housing counseling. The mission of HUD is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD provides support services directly and through approved, local agencies like MMI.
  • Council on Accreditation Council On Accreditation
    MMI is proudly accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA), an international, independent, nonprofit, human service accrediting organization. COA’s thorough, peer-reviewed accreditation process is designed to ensure that organizations like MMI are providing the highest standard of service and support for clients and employees alike.
  • National Foundation for Credit Counseling National Foundation for Credit Counseling
    MMI is a longstanding member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®), the nation’s largest nonprofit financial counseling organization. Founded in 1951, the NFCC’s mission is to promote financially responsible behavior and help member organizations like MMI deliver the highest-quality financial education and counseling services.