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Find the Best Debt Consolidation in Madison, WI

Having high amounts of debt can make you feel hopeless, but debt relief can help. Many Madison residents use debt relief methods like debt consolidation, debt settlement, credit counseling or bankruptcy. Madison.com has partnered with ConsumerAffairs to create this guide by comparing availability, service areas and consumer reviews of 19 businesses and choosing eight favorites from the top debt consolidation companies in Madison.

Companies pay ConsumerAffairs to be accredited, and Madison.com and/or ConsumerAffairs may receive compensation when you click a link, call a number or fill out a form on this site.

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What to look for in a debt relief company in Madison

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Many debt relief companies require you to owe a specific amount of unsecured debt, so it’s essential to find one that works with the amount you owe. Minimum debt requirements vary by company — some debt relief companies only work with customers who have more than $7,500 or $10,000 of unsecured debt. Debt from car loans and mortgages do not qualify for debt relief.

For some Madison residents, debt consolidation, which combines your debts into one monthly payment at a lower interest rate, may be the way to go. Debt consolidation typically involves taking out a loan to pay off your existing debt.

For residents having a difficult time making their minimum payments, debt settlement may be a better option. During debt settlement, you stop making payments to your creditors and instead pay into a specific account. The debt settlement company uses the funds in that account to negotiate with your creditors in an attempt to settle your debts for less than you owe.

Filing for bankruptcy should be a last resort — it can hurt your credit score and affect your finances for years to come.

Debt settlement vs. debt consolidation in Madison

Your financial situation determines whether debt consolidation or debt settlement services are right for you. Some companies only offer debt consolidation, while some specialize in debt settlement. However, many companies in Madison handle both, and some provide additional debt relief services, such as credit counseling.

If you’re not sure what kind of debt relief you need, look for a full-service company that can help you decide the best option for your situation.

To qualify for a debt consolidation loan, you typically need a credit score of at least 580, but some debt consolidation companies may require a higher score. Debt settlement companies do not have a credit score requirement.

Debt relief costs in Madison

Debt consolidation often requires taking out a new loan that pays off your existing debts, so your cost is the interest of that loan. Interest rates on debt consolidation loans typically range between 8% and 30%. Debt consolidation companies might also charge an origination fee between 1% to 5% of the total loan amount.

With debt settlement services, the cost is anywhere between 15% to 25% of the debt amount you owe, though some companies charge a percentage of the amount of money they save for you through negotiation.

Madison debt relief FAQ

Do debt relief companies hurt your credit score?

It depends on the type of debt relief program. Debt settlement typically lowers your credit score because the process requires you to stop paying your creditors until the debt relief company negotiates a settlement. Missed payments can stay on your credit report for up to seven years.

Taking out a debt consolidation loan, like any other loan, may hurt your credit in the short-term, but your credit score should stay the same or increase as long as you make on-time payments.

What questions should I ask a debt relief company?

Some questions to ask a debt settlement or debt consolidation company representative include:

  • What are your fees?
  • How long does the debt settlement process take and how much does it cost?
  • Do you make monthly payments to creditors on my behalf?
  • Can you calculate my estimated savings?
  • Where is my money held during settlement negotiations?
  • How often will I hear from you?
  • How can I contact you?

Can I get a loan after debt settlement?

It depends. Because debt settlement requires you to stop making payments on your debts, it may impact your credit score, which in turn affects your ability to qualify for a loan.

Is debt consolidation risky?

Yes, it can be risky. If you make late payments, miss payments or continue to rack up debt while you’re paying off your debt consolidation loan, your credit score decreases.

Is debt relief a good idea?

Depending on your circumstances, a debt relief company can reduce the amount of debt you owe or help you pay it off more easily. If you have a large amount of debt that you’re struggling to make payments on or you want to save money by consolidating it at a lower interest rate, you should consider working with a debt relief company.

Madison debt relief company information

Accredited Partner

National Debt Relief

National Debt Relief offers a variety of online tools to help Madison residents take control of their debt. This company provides all potential clients a free savings estimate with no upfront costs or obligations. Online reviews mention friendly, professional customer service and how National Debt Relief helped reduce clients’ payments and stop harassment from debt collectors.

National Debt Relief Learn More
Accredited Partner

Freedom Debt Relief

Freedom Debt Relief helps you manage existing debts and trains you on how to manage your finances better. As a debt settlement provider, Freedom Debt Relief negotiates with creditors to lower your debts. Online reviews indicate general satisfaction with customer service, affordability and the time it takes to pay off debt.

Freedom Debt Relief Learn More (855) 381-0979
Accredited Partner

Accredited Debt Relief

Accredited Debt Relief provides Madison residents with a number of debt-related services, including financial counseling and debt consolidation. It has certified debt counselors on staff who work to create a debt management plan that fits your needs.

Accredited Debt Relief Learn More (877) 566-8703
Accredited Partner

CreditAssociates

CreditAssociates advertises that most customers finish its program within two to three years. The company offers debt settlement services and negotiates with your creditors to help reduce what you owe. Reviewers commonly say that CreditAssociates is upfront and honest during every step of the debt settlement process.

CreditAssociates Learn More
Accredited Partner

CountryWide Debt Relief

CountryWide Debt Relief has years of experience helping Madison residents reduce and eliminate their debt. It provides online tools to help you manage your debt. Program lengths range from 12 months to 48 months, depending on how much debt you have. Online reviews report general satisfaction with the company’s value.

CountryWide Debt Relief Learn More
Accredited Partner

Pacific Debt

Pacific Debt has been in business for 16 years. The company assigns you a personal account manager to walk you through the negotiation process and update you during every phase of the process. Online reviews report a high satisfaction rate for the cost and the quality of services.

Pacific Debt Learn More

GreenPath Financial Wellness

GreenPath Financial Wellness is a nonprofit that helps people across the U.S. with debt problems. Madison residents can set up free consultations with a certified counselor to develop a personalized financial strategy. This may include creating a debt management plan to pay off debt in three to five years. GreenPath works with most creditors. Its office is located at 725 Heartland Trail, Ste. 110, Madison, WI 53717.

GreenPath Financial Wellness

Dane County Credit Union

Dane County Credit Union assists members with credit counseling, financial education and money management services. Visit its website or stop by any of its Madison branches to become a member. The company has four locations in Madison, including one at 2160 Rimrock Road, Madison, WI 53713.

Dane County Credit Union