Who Is ClearOne Advantage for?
ClearOne Advantage’s target audience is people in a financial rut who are having a hard time paying off debt. According to ClearOne Advantage reviews, the company can help these individuals get out of the vicious debt cycle by negotiating with creditors to reach a settlement with improved terms.
Located in Baltimore, the company has been in business for around a decade and a half. In that time, it has gained the reputation of a real problem-solver for those in need of debt relief.
However, is it the best option out there?
When researching ClearOne Advantage ratings, you will see that both experts and former clients have a lot of good things to say about the company. However, there are a few pretty substantial negatives as well.
As a rule of thumb, debt settlement should only be the last resort. It can negatively affect your credit score and potentially make you join the 5% of Americans with a poor credit score. Before actually settling, your creditors can even take legal action against you.
That said, if you are struggling with debt, consider all of your options before reaching out to a settlement company.
What Makes ClearOne Advantage Stand Out?
Formerly known as QualityOne, ClearOne Advantage is a renowned debt-resolution company. It specializes in providing debt settlement services to clients struggling to pay off their unsecured debts.
Experts agree that the company offers superior debt negotiation services and has decent customer service. The company claims to tailor each program to individual client needs.
Since 2007, the company has managed to wipe out millions in debt, and even though it’s a younger company than most other debt settlement firms on the scene, it has a good reputation. However, there’ll be more than one ClearOne Advantage review speaking ill of it, so make sure to go through all the pros and cons.
ClearOne Advantage is also accredited by several organizations. More precisely, it is an AFCC member, an IAPDA member, and a BBB-accredited company.
The company requires its clients to have a minimum of $10,000 in outstanding debt to apply for their programs. Even though the company employs debt-settlement experts with enough experience to tackle even the most complex financial challenge, expert reviewers often highlight the same ClearOne Advantage complaints. For example, dealing with this company has high potential costs and is likely to be non-transparent.
The Application Process
Applying for ClearOne’s services is pretty straightforward: you start by entering the type and total amount of the debt you owe. Next, you will have to enter personal info, like your email address, name, home address, and the last four digits of your Social Security number.
ClearOne Advantage debt–relief reviews agree with the company’s claim that applying for a consultation won’t damage your credit score and will be absolutely free of charge. After submitting your application form, one of their specialists will reach out to you.
ClearOne Advantage Key Features
Now, after talking about the basics, it’s time to take a closer look at the company’s process, costs, client feedback, and everything else you need to know whether the firm’s worth your time.
What is ClearOne Advantage, exactly? It’s a company of debt experts who negotiate with creditors to reach a settlement of your debt.
After submitting your application, you will receive a free consultation with a ClearOne Advantage expert, who will help you determine the best route for resolving your financial issues.
Should you choose to enroll in the company’s program, you will stop making monthly payments on your debts and deposit the money into an escrow account. Once the funds in said account reach a specific threshold, ClearOne will start negotiations on your behalf.
While this may seem like a good idea, ClearOne Advantage customer reviews and expert assessments alike mention that your credit score will drop, because you’ll stop making regular payments to your creditors. This can have several short and long-term consequences, so you might also need to think about the best options to repair your credit score later.
Even paying the settlement off won’t immediately improve your score, since your credit report will still show you did not pay the total amount of the debt.
There are different approaches to debt settlement. Some say that the risks and disadvantages are still better than bankruptcy, while others disagree. Is ClearOne Advantage a scam? No, it is not. The company is both BBB-accredited and has an excellent score on Trustpilot, with over 6,500 reviews.
If you are suspicious about debt settlement, you can also consider other options, like a debt consolidation loan, or a debt management plan.
Personal Consulting and Other Features
Nowadays, a free consultation is pretty much a standard feature with every debt-settlement company. This way, a financial expert can hear about your case, and you get to learn about the associated risks and costs as a potential client. More than one ClearOne Advantage review pointed out the importance of taking advantage of these free sessions as you can learn more about the debt settlement process.
Following your enrollment, you will get a personal debt-settlement consultant, who will have a deep understanding of your specific financial situation and will be more invested in finding you better options.
The ClearOne Advantage App
Another great feature ClearOne offers is its mobile app. This can be a great feature to keep track of your debt settlement without constantly having to speak with company representatives. The app allows you to check your balance, view transactions, transfer funds, and read settlement letters.
The app can be a true time saver and a great way to stay on top of your finances during the lengthy debt settlement process; the program may last from 24 up to 60 months.
ClearOne Advantage Customer Service
This company has a quite good reputation when it comes to customer service. The support team consists of educated experts who know the ins and outs of financials.
On the other hand, you also have a helpful resource center on the website. The blog section, resource page, and other sources offer info about the company’s programs and debt relief in general. After all, having enough information is crucial for making such impactful financial decisions as debt settlement.
If you want to reach out to the company, you can start by dialing the ClearOne Advantage phone number, or contacting it via email.
Phone lines are open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern Standard Time and Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Costs, Terms, Savings, and Rates
As mentioned before, submitting your application and receiving an initial consultation is free. You won’t have to pay anything until you’ve accepted the terms of your settlement, and the company opens an escrow account for you.
What you end up paying for the company’s services will vary by state, but generally, ClearOne Advantage charges around 25% of your enrolled debt as commission.
ClearOne Advantage, being a BBB-accredited company, is upfront about potential savings as well. According to company statistics, customers save 50% on their debts before fees, and around 25% after fees. The total amount of savings depends on the amount of money you owe and the nature of the settlement.
Experts usually warn readers against debt settlement companies, because this niche has been known for several lawsuits and predatory behavior. You should also know about the potential for ClearOne Advantage lawsuit-worthy problems occurring.
First of all, the company is a legitimate debt-settlement firm, holding both American Fair Credit Council (AFCC) and International Association of Professional Debt Arbitrators (IAPDA) accreditations.
On the other hand, the company’s disclaimer spells out everything one should know about the company’s profile and services. It’s a debt settlement company only, and offers no credit repair nor debt consolidation services. It also doesn’t give investment advice.
All in all, you can see that ClearOne Advantage is a serious company in the field of debt settlement, with several important certificates and generally positive customer and expert reviews.
When comparing it to other companies (think ClearOne Advantage vs. National Debt Relief), you might find that ClearOne Advantage will have a higher minimum debt requirement and charge you slightly more at the end. Transparency issues might also be relevant, like not being entirely precise about pricing and not disclosing the list of states the company operates in.
Nonetheless, the company might be a solid option for those experiencing financial hardship.
Pros & Cons
- Personal consultant
- Free consultation
- Educational resources
- Available only in 22 states
- Passes your info to third parties
- Negative effect on credit score
Is ClearOne advantage legit?
The company holds several accreditations and association memberships with high-ranking industry organizations. This makes it a legitimate option for anyone interested in their services. There might be some transparency issues regarding pricing, but the website is quite clear about the nature of the business. Apart from that, you can reach out to its solid customer support team with your questions anytime.
Can you cancel ClearOne Advantage?
In short, yes, you can. If you are not entirely satisfied with your program and contact the company within the first 30 days of signing your agreement, you will also be entitled to get back all the funds in your escrow account and get a full refund of all settlement fees paid until that point.
If you wish to terminate your program after the 30-day period, you will receive all the funds in your account, but won’t get a refund of the fees the company charged you thus far.
What is the best debt-relief company?
Depending on the state you live in, the amount of debt you amassed, and the total amount of money you are willing to pay for debt settlement services, you can choose from a large number of companies. When determining the best company for your specific situation, always look through customer reviews, expert assessments, ratings, and accreditations. Lastly, scheduling free consultations with several companies can help you choose the right one.
How does a debt-relief program affect your credit?
When you enroll in a program, most debt settlement companies will tell you to stop making payments to your creditors. Instead, you’ll add money to an escrow account that will be used to pay off your settlement in the end. This will affect your credit negatively, as your report will state that you failed to make regular payments.
What’s more, as many ClearOne Advantage reviews will point out, even if you manage to settle, your credit report will still state that you did not pay the total debt amount. Lastly, your creditors might even sue you for not making payments during the negotiation period.
So, before jumping head-first into a debt settlement program, always make sure that you’ve considered all of your other options as well.