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CountryWide Debt Relief review

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Enroll as little as $5,000 of unsecured debts in this straight-forward program.

  • Best for people in extreme financial hardship.
  • Pick something else if you aren’t at least 60 days late on most of your credit card bills.

$5,000

Minimum debt

12 to 48 months

Typical turnaround

Settlement fee of 18%

Fees

CountryWide Debt Relief details

ServicesDebt settlement, debt management, credit counseling
Minimum debtVaries by company
Typical turnaroundAround six months
FeesFlat fee of around $2,500 to $4,500
Types of debt Tax and credit card debt
AccreditationsNone
RatingsNone
Free resources or toolsPrice tool, debt relief company scam reports, debt checkup quiz, company reviews, offer-in-compromise tools including a script and calculator
Customer servicePhone, email, mail

Expert review

Shannon Terrell

Review by


Shannon Terrell is a writer for Finder who studied communications and English literature at the University of Toronto. On any given day, you can find her researching everything from equine financing and business loans to student debt refinancing and how to start a trust. She loves hot coffee, the smell of fresh books and discovering new ways to save her pennies.

Expert review

CountryWide Debt Relief could be a good resource if you’re facing an extreme financial hardship you weren’t prepared for. It offers relatively competitive rates and more comprehensive services than most other debt relief companies. But specific information about its services — including the amount you might pay — aren’t available online.

Before you sign up, see what other debt relief providers have to offer.

How does CountryWide Debt Relief work?

CountryWide Debt Relief is primarily a debt settlement company that negotiates with creditors to reduce your debts in exchange for a one-time payment. It also connects you with debt consolidation lenders and even provides legal assistance if bankruptcy is a better option for you.

CountryWide Debt Relief — like any debt relief company — is not for people who simply want to reduce the amount they owe. You must be able to prove you’re facing serious financial hardship in order to qualify. Qualifying hardships might include losing your job, divorce, death of a spouse or family member or a medical emergency.

How much does it cost?

It depends on how much debt you enroll. CountryWide charges a flat 18% fee on your enrolled debt at the time you sign up. However, you don’t pay this fee until it settles your debts. And if CountryWide isn’t able to negotiate your debt down to below 80% of its value, you won’t be charged a fee.

Say you enroll $10,000 of credit card debt. No matter how much your debt accumulates, your fee will always be $1,800 — unless it’s unable to negotiate some of your debts below 80%. In those cases, you won’t be charged a fee — though you’ll still have to find another way to pay off that debt.

How much could I save with CountryWide Debt Relief?

How much you save depends on how much CountryWide is able to negotiate your debt down, how much debt you originally enroll and how much your debt accumulates during your enrollment. On its results page, CountryWide provides examples of customers who saves tens of thousands of dollars off their debts — but your results will vary, especially if you don’t enroll with a large amount of debt.

Is CountryWide Debt Relief legit?

Yes, CountryWide is a legit debt settlement company. Its website is secure and uses McAfee software to monitor the for malware, phishing and other attacks. Its privacy policy covers how it collects and shares your personal information. CountryWide states that it won’t sell your personal information without prior consent — and you can opt out of receiving marketing materials.

While it isn’t am member of the International Association of Professional Debt Arbitrators (IAPDA), it is accredited by the American Fair Credit Council (AFCC). Both trade organizations were created to help enforce standards and protect consumers from scams — which are less of a problem than they were a decade ago, but still exist.

Pros

  • Low fee of 18% of enrolled debt
  • No fees if debt isn’t negotiated below 80%
  • Accredited by the AFCC

Cons

  • Fee charged on enrolled debt, not savings
  • Not accredited with the IAPDA
  • Limited information available online
  • Spotty customer service

Compare more debt relief companies

These top debt relief companies offer free quotes so you can choose the right option to handle your debt.

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Costs Requirements
National Debt Relief
18–25% of total enrolled debt
Must have a legitimate financial hardship which is preventing the ability to pay creditors and a minimum of $7,500 in debt.
Get back on your feet with a top-rated debt relief company that works with multiple types of debt.
Freedom Debt Relief
Monthly payment based on enrolled debt, no upfront fees
Must have at least $7,500 in unsecured debt, have a hardship is preventing the ability to pay creditors, and live in a serviced state.
Freedom Debt Relief is a debt settlement company that works to help people with unmanageable, unsecured debt get back on their feet.
Accredited Debt Relief
Charges and fees vary by the company you're ultimately connected with
Must be at least 18 years old and a legal US resident; additional terms may apply based on services and products used.
This A+ BBB-rated service offers free consultations to lower your monthly payments help you get out of debt faster.
Pacific Debt
15%–25% of total debt enrolled. Fees vary by state of residence.
Reside in a state where PDI’s services are available and have $10,000+ of debt to enroll
Consolidated Credit
Fees regulated by client's state of residence, can range from$0 to $69 with an average monthly fee of $35. No upfront or contingency fees.
Debt must not be payday loans or secured loans.
This debt settlement alternative can help you find a path to financial freedom.
American Credit Card Solutions
No upfront costs — settlement fees range from 15% to 25%, depending on your state of residence and amount of debt.
Must live in a state that American Credit Card Solutions serves, $10,000+ in unsecured debt, legitimate financial hardship which is preventing the ability to pay creditors
Overall positive customer ratings — but it's only available in 25 states.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Before you sign up with a debt relief company

Debt relief companies typically charge a percentage of a customer’s debt or a monthly program fee for their services. And not all companies are transparent about these costs or drawbacks that can negatively affect your credit score. Depending on the company you work with, you might pay other fees for third-party settlement services or setting up new accounts, which can leave you in a worse situation than when you signed up.

Consider alternatives before signing up with a debt relief company:

  • Payment extensions. Companies you owe may be willing to extend your payment due date or put you on a longer payment plan if you ask.
  • Nonprofit credit counseling. Look for free debt-management help from nonprofit organizations like the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.
  • Debt settlement. If you can manage to pay a portion of the bill, offer the collection agency a one-time payment as a settlement. Collection agencies are often willing to accept a lower payment on your debt to close the account.

CountryWide Debt Relief reviews and complaints

CountryWide receives mixed reviews on its BBB page. Recent customers call it professional and helpful, stating that CountryWide was able to help them with their debts. Others warn that CountryWide isn’t helpful for small debts and that there wasn’t enough communication during the initial settlement process.

What is CountryWide Debt Relief?

CountryWide debt relief has a team of debt consultants and negotiators to help you pay off your creditors at a reasonable rate. It has been in business for 12 years, according to its BBB page, and states that its experts have over 30 years of combined experience.

How do I get started?

You can sign up for CountryWide Debt Relief’s program online by following these steps:

  1. Go to the CountryWide Debt Relief website and click See if you qualify for debt relief.
  2. Select the amount of debt you want to enroll, how far behind you are on your payments and your credit rating.
  3. Enter your contact information and select your state.
  4. Click See your results.

If you’re preapproved, you should get a message telling you to contact CountryWide Debt Relief for a free consultation. After discussing your situation, you should receive an email with the application and a list of documents you need to provide if you’re eligible for the program. Otherwise, CountryWide might put you in touch with one of its partners that provides debt consolidation loans or legal services that can help through the bankruptcy process.

I’ve signed up. What happens next?

CountryWide’s debt settlement program requires you to stop using credit. This means you shouldn’t sign up for any loans or, more importantly, use your credit cards. You can then expect to go through the follow steps:

  1. Continue to make repayments on your debts. You’re still responsible for monthly repayments until CountryWide comes to an agreement with your creditors.
  2. Start making monthly payments into a third-party account. This will help you save up for your debt settlement fund, based on the payment plan you agreed to before signing up.
  3. CountryWide starts negotiating with your creditors. Your negotiator will present you with a settlement offer from your creditor, asking your permission to withdraw from your settlement fund to pay it off.

CountryWide repeats this process with all of your creditors until the program is complete.

If you’re just struggling to repay your bills and not facing bankruptcy, you might want to consider other debt relief options before contacting CountryWide.

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