In theory, anything that a credit counseling service can do for your credit rating or dent management, you can do the same yourself. So the question arises whether you should use a credit counseling service or go about fixing your credit yourself.
What a credit counseling service attempts to do initially is coolly financial data and come up with some sort of a finance management plan under which you are given the best possible strategies to control your expenditure and live within certain means. This in turn is expected to increase your disposable income so that you can start paying off your debts while being able to meet your living expenses. If a counseling agency determines that the matter how it crunches the numbers making payments on your current debts is simply not possible to you under the existing terms of repayment, it encourages you to enter into a debt management plan where it renegotiates the terms of interest, tenure of the loan or removal of late fees with the creditor. It then undertakes to make the payments on your behalf to all your lenders from the amount that you deposit with it every month. All this is nothing that you cannot manage yourself. If you are willing to take the responsibility and live within your means you can cut down on your surplus expenses. If you have been in good standing with your creditors in the past you can to make it with them in order to renegotiate certain terms and conditions that will make it easier for you to pay back the money that you owe them. However, in reality, this may be more difficult than it sounds. Somebody who has suffered from bad spending habits may find it difficult to come up with an effective budget all by himself. Even the lenders may be more susceptible to striking a deal with a professional credit counseling agency rather than with the individual consumer. If you decide that you lack the discipline to control your credit privileges than you may need the services of a credit councilor.
If you do decide to use the services of a credit councilor always bear in mind that the solution should recommend the amount that you are comfortable with paying every month. If it is more than you can afford you are bound to lapse on following the management plan over the period of time that you are required to which is usually two to five years.
You should also be aware of the fact that many credit counseling services are paid by the lenders on a percentage basis for the payments that they receive from them under debt management plan. It is possible that you may be encouraged to pay more than you can afford or are comfortable bill on debts like your credit card balance.