Clarifi is one of the oldest debt companies we have covered on DebtReviews. They were founded way back in 1966, and have been working hard to clear huge sums of personal debt ever since.
They emphasize education, counseling, and guidance to get debtors over their financial hurdles and to help them attain financial freedom. Clarifi differentiates itself from competitors by offering a debt counseling program that goes above and beyond, excelling in many areas. However, there are also some issues with this company and these pros and cons will be covered in our Clarifi review.
- Address: 1608 Walnut St Fl 10, Philadelphia, PA 19103-5451
- Web Address: http://clarifi.org/
- Date of Founding: 5/31/1966
- Contact Number: (215) 563-5665
- BBB Accredited? Yes, since 1997.
We usually have a lot of negative things to say about company websites in this industry. It seems like they are either very basic and very dated, or they are messy, cluttered and loaded with pop-ups. We expected Clarifi to be one of these two as that's usually the case with long-established companies, but it actually has a very good website and we'd go as far as to say that it was one of the best we have encountered.
It's also one of the few that actually went to the trouble of getting an SSL, which protects user data. As far as we're concerned this is an absolute necessity, but it's something that so many companies fail to do.
Clarifi is an established, non-profit organization that is centered around promoting financial responsibility and using that knowledge to escape debt. They provide certified counselors to help consumers in debt, covering everything from credit reports, debt management, housing help, college planning and loans, and bankruptcy support.
They also provide debt consolidation, helping customers to negotiate lower interest rates across all of their unsecured debts and bringing all of those debts into one, easy to manage, monthly payment. They also offer educational resources like workshops and DIY money boot camps.
Clarifi is federally funded. This means that they are there to help and should not turn you away if you are in need. In fact, they claim just that on their FAQ page. However, they also admit that their funding is not as big or as regular as they need and that increased competition for this funding has left them a little out of pocket. In other words, they may not be able to offer the kind of support that you require, but at the same time they should be able to offer you something that fits within your price range.
As far as the price ranges go, some of their services are offered for free, others begin at $50. This is not a premium tax or debt service like Trinity Debt, Tax Group Center and Taxation Solutions, so don't expect eye-raising quotes.
Clarifi have a huge team of experienced professionals working at all levels of the company. However, if you take a look at employee review sites you'll see that a lot of former staff members have very negative things to say. We've heard these reports echoed by employees that we have contacted and it is somewhat troubling.
There are no claims of scams, pressure selling, or anything of the sort, but there are a lot of complaints about large scale lay-offs, low pay, and management issues. These may have an impact on customer satisfaction, as it creates an air of uncertainty and this can result in some anxiety and lack of enthusiasm behind the scenes.
Our Clarifi Review
- Over half a century in business
- Free consultation with certified credit counselors
- NFCC accredited
Above and Beyond Services
Califi offers low fees for its services combined with more experience than most of their competitors in the industry. They truly go above and beyond the call of duty and this can be felt in every facet of the business. It's the reason they have been going for so long and are the first port of call for millions of Americans struggling with unsecured debt.
Its services included debt management programs that are just as in-depth as its support. These programs provide advice, counseling, and assistance with anything financial, including general unsecured debt help (such as managing household credit card debt) housing and mortgages, and household food bills. This in and of itself is much more than what is offered by other consolidation companies. They even offer courses geared towards single mothers.
Clarifi also provides a free consultation to all prospective customers, during which time an expert will determine if the customer is a good fit for their services.
The certified counselor will review their financial situation and help to prepare a budget plan that fits each individual’s needs accordingly. On top of this, a counselor will aid the customer in creating a plan of action to help ensure their continued financial freedom.
Debt management programs are available to any person in any socio-economic class. They are non-profit, so their goal is to help and to cover their costs, and not to make a substantial profit.
These plans aim to create one one monthly payment on credit debt and other types of unsecured debt with a lowered interest rate. As a non-profit business, they will never turn away a client in need because they can't afford the payments or because their debt is not large enough to generate an interest.
Clarifi is accredited with the NFCC, proof of their commitment to following sound business practices and dealing with customer concerns. They also offer certified counselors to aid customers during the entire debt management process. We are also pleased to see that Clarifi hasn’t been involved in any lawsuits despite the fact that they have been in business for over half a century!
These lawsuits are very common and we have discussed some of the issues with companies like Freedom Debt Relief, so the lack of such issues is a huge plus.
- Limited availability
- Unknown interest rates
- Unknown refund policy
One major issue with Clarifi is their availability. Because while they are happy to accept clients with any issue and any budget, they are not able to accept citizens of all states. In fact, they are only able to operate in Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. On top of this, they are only available in certain counties inside of these states.
This greatly limits their availability and will be a big disappointment to many prospective customers. However, there are many other companies like this around and there are sure to be a number in your area. Just take a look at our other reviews to find these.
The average interest rates, upfront fees, and refund policy aren’t disclosed on the Clarifi website. Not only does this make it difficult for potential customers, but it also makes it harder for us to rank them effectively. Some of their prices are disclosed though and they are a non-profit, so there should be very reasonable rates throughout.
No Refund Policy
Clarifi doesn't seem to offer a refund policy of any kind. This is not a big issue really, and they are not even that common in debt management, but it would still be nice to see.
Refunds have become synonymous with debt settlement and you can also find them on many tax relief companies. It gives the client an additional backup plan and ensures that they can pullout without any financial loss if they feel like things are not going to plan.
The Bottom Line
Clarifi has helped thousands of people get out of debt and stay financially free since 1966. They are one of the longest running and most trusted companies in this sector and offer an array of helpful services. We would like to see more transparency regarding their prices and interest rates, as well as everything else that a client can expect, and it would also be nice to see them expand their reach beyond the three states that they operate in.
All of that aside, however, this is a very good company and one that we are happy to recommend to anyone struggling with debt, or anyone who needs some financial advice.