Most credit repair companies simply file disputes on behalf of their customers, doing very little to address other factors that might contribute to poor credit. Credilife is a standout exception, pairing each customer with their own credit coach for what the company calls a “holistic approach” to improving financial wellness. But this service comes at a cost; Credilife’s fees are among the highest in the industry, and that’s not the only cause for concern. Keep reading to learn why you might or might not want to sign up for credit repair with Credilife.
- Financial wellness services cover more than credit repair: In addition to credit repair, Credilife offers debt management, financial planning, and homebuying assistance.
- Options for small businesses: The company’s business credit program helps small business owners improve creditworthiness and get funding.
- Library of free educational resources: Anyone can access Credilife’s free DIY guides for step-by-step credit dispute instructions.
- Occasionally runs promotional discounts: From time to time, Credilife offers new customers discounts on their first work fees.
- Positive customer reviews: Past customers have nothing but positive feedback regarding their experience with Credilife.
- Pricing not disclosed up front: Credilife doesn’t post its pricing online, which can be a red flag for transparency.
- Extremely high fees: At $299, first work fees are higher than just about any other credit repair company. Monthly fees of $135 are also above average.
- Confusing service options: Credilife doesn’t do a great job of clearly explaining its various service packages.
- Coaches work on a commission basis: Credilife’s coaches make money based on how much they sell, which may influence the recommendations they make to customers.
- Few years in business: The company has only been around since 2017, which isn’t long compared to competitors with decades in the business.
Types of Services
Credilife offers a few types of services tailored to various specific goals. While the company’s standard credit repair package covers a broad range of needs, you’ll also find options for homebuying, student loan debt, and small businesses.
Credit Life Improvement Program
The Credit Life Improvement Program is Credilife’s core personal credit repair plan. While most competitors focus their services around credit disputes, Credilife takes a more organic approach that prioritizes consumer education and addresses many other contributing factors to credit health.
Customers who enroll in the Credit Life Improvement Program start with a thorough one-on-one evaluation of their credit report and financials with a coach. After this initial session, the company mails out a welcome kit that includes the Credit Builder Blueprint, a physical booklet personalized to each customer. This blueprint lays out a step-by-step guide to the individual’s credit repair plan created by their coach.
As you’d expect, Credilife handles credit disputes for any inaccurate information found on a customer’s credit report. But what you’re really paying for is ongoing access to a personal credit coach. The ultimate goal is to repair credit not just by removing inaccuracies but by addressing multiple areas that need improvement with better overall financial habits and an effective debt management plan.
RightWay to Real Estate Program
Oftentimes, prospective homebuyers sign up for credit repair in an effort to improve their credit score before applying for a mortgage. Credilife offers a specific program for those preparing to buy a home, which it calls RightWay to Real Estate.
The program begins with Credilife’s credit repair service but takes a turn once credit reporting errors have been addressed. Credilife remains involved through the homebuying process, helping the customer apply for and secure a mortgage through a preferred lender. The company advertises up to $800 in cash back at closing, which can be put toward closing fees.
Shopping around for a mortgage is one of the most important parts of the homebuying process. Even a small difference in interest rate can translate to thousands of dollars over the life of the loan. There’s no guarantee that Credilife will get you the best mortgage rate; in fact, it’s more than likely that the company makes a commission for every referral they make. Always shop around on your own before settling with a recommended lender.
Student Loan Help
Student loans are a financial burden for many Americans. If you’ve struggled to repay your student debt, your credit score might suffer as a result. Credilife employs student loan specialists who undergo training in specific government debt relief and refinancing options. To take advantage of this service, customers simply need to request a Credilife coach who specializes in student loans upon signup.
Business Credit Program
Credit repair services are a dime a dozen, but Credilife is one of very few companies to offer a program for small businesses. The service works in two parts. First, participants work with a credit coach to build or establish their business’s credit. A funding coach then enters the picture to help secure credit or funding. The process can take anywhere from 30 days to 12 months depending on the business owner’s personal credit and available collateral.
Although Credilife includes outstanding financial guidance with its Credit Life Improvement Program, customers can take advantage of one optional add-on designed for more long-term financial planning.
Most Credilife customers stay with the company for nine months on average. For affordable, long-term financial management, Credilife refers customers to Money Mastery, a third-party mobile app with a more affordable monthly subscription fee. The Money Mastery app tracks spending and helps customers follow a plan to eliminate debt and build wealth for retirement. Coaches are available to answer questions and offer guidance, although the process isn’t as hands-on as Credilife’s program.
Since Credilife bases its services around a personal relationship with a one-on-one coach, customer service might be a bit different from what you’re used to. The company’s central offices are open from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. CST with representatives available by phone and email. However, each individual coach sets their own hours and may be available at different times based on request. If it’s urgent, Credilife does provide an option to request a call from the next available coach through its website.
One interesting thing to note is Credilife’s presence on social media. Most coaches are very active on Facebook, and several private credit help groups are open for anyone to join. A live chat powered by Facebook Messenger is accessible through Credilife’s website, which the platform lists as “very responsive” to messages.
With that said, we do have one significant concern about Credilife’s coaches. According to our research, these coaches are actually classified as salespeople, which means they earn a commission based on what they sell to customers. Unfortunately, this can create an environment in which coaches make recommendations based on what will earn them a higher paycheck, not necessarily what’s best for the customer.
The term “credit coach” is a fairly vague title that doesn’t carry much weight in the credit repair industry. A credit coach can be a qualified legal expert or a salesperson with a simple training course under their belt. The easiest way to tell the difference is to ask the company how their representatives are compensated. If they earn a commission, they’re in a sales role.
While most credit repair companies face high volumes of complaints from customers, Credilife is notably absent from this list. The company gets outstanding feedback from past clients on most platforms, accumulating a 4.4-star rating on Google reviews and a 4.69-star average review with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Credilife has just one complaint on file with the BBB and none with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).
If you have a complaint about the services of a credit repair company, you can file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) or call 877-FTC-HELP.
Credilife bills on a month-to-month basis and, in accordance with the Credit Repair Organizations Act, doesn’t charge customers until the end of each month. Services can be canceled anytime by contacting customer service before the start of the next billing period. According to Credilife, most customers stay with the company for around nine months.
The biggest drawback to Credilife is its high cost. First work fees run $299, far exceeding every other credit repair company we reviewed. Ongoing fees are also high at $135 per month; while some competitors sell plans in the same price range, most offer a cheaper option for customers on a budget. To its credit, Credilife does occasionally run promotions with discounted initial work fees.
The Money Mastery program is much more affordable at $19.95 per month and can be purchased alongside a Credilife service or on its own. Just keep in mind that this program doesn’t include any credit repair services and is best for long-term budget planning.
The Competition: Credilife vs. Credit Assistance Network
To see if Credilife is really worth its high fees, we compared it to Credit Assistance Network, a competitor with a slightly different cost structure. Credit Assistance Network charges a $179 first work fee, a bit over half what Credilife collects from customers.
But instead of setting a flat monthly rate for ongoing service, Credit Assistance Network bills $50 for every credit report deletion. Since this is a per-bureau fee, an item that appeared on all three reports will cost $150 to have removed. Customers who pay Credit Assistance Network to remove just one item from all three reports every month will have already exceeded Credilife’s monthly fee—and they won’t have any credit coaching to show for it. Credilife is easily the better value.
|Credilife||Credit Assistance Network|
|Services Offered||Credit disputes, debt management, business services||Credit repair|
|Customer Service Touchpoints||Phone, email, client portal, web chat, social media||Phone, email, client portal|
|Monthly Fee||$135.00||Varies by number of disputes|
Credilife’s unique credit repair approach covers more territory than most competitors in terms of overall financial health. It’s hard to find another company that can offer comparable one-on-one coaching. However, the company’s high fees that aren’t disclosed up front make us hesitant, and we’re not quite sold on Credilife coaches’ qualifications. With that said, the company’s free resource center with a credit dispute how-to guide is a great place to go for assistance.
How We Review Credit Repair Companies
Our credit repair reviews are based on a quantitative scoring system that evaluates plan options, pricing, customer opinions, and quality of service. Our method assigns points based on specific criteria in each category, with the most consumer-friendly companies receiving the highest scores. The data we use is gathered through our own research and from third-party sources such as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Better Business Bureau.