Credit Counselors: Salary Overview
Credit counselors advise individuals or companies on how to acquire and manage debt.
Their job description typically includes explaining loan requirements and providing advice on the best type of loan.
Credit counselors may also design debt management plans and prepare student aid packages.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for credit counselors was $45,950 per year or $22,09 per hour as of May 2019.
This means that half the workers in this profession earned less than this amount and half earned more.
Salaries in this field vary based on a wide range of factors, such as experience, education, and industry of employment.
The best-paid 10 percent earned more than $76,740 per year while the lowest 10 percent made less than $31,670 per year.
Credit Counselor Salary by Industry
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics credit counselors typically work for colleges, universities, or professional schools, for credit intermediation companies, for junior colleges or for hospitals.
Their biggest employer, colleges, universities, and professional schools, offered credit counselors a mean annual wage of $50,800.
Credit counselors who work in the field of credit intermediation and related activities earned, on average, $51,920 while those who work for nondepository credit intermediation companies made $52,650 per year, on average.
The average wage was $50,750 per year for credit counselors who worked for junior colleges and $44,400 for those who were employed by hospitals.
According to the BLS, the highest-paying industries for credit counselors were the field of grantmaking and giving services, automobile dealers, and companies that provide securities, commodity contracts, and other financial investment and related activities.
The mean annual wage for credit counselors who worked in the industry of grantmaking and giving services was $86,150- almost double the average for this profession.
Automobile dealers paid credit counselors, on average, with $78,770 a year.
Credit counselors who worked for companies that provide securities, commodity contracts, and other financial investment and related activities earned, on average, $67,750 per year.
However, these high-paying fields hired only a few credit counselors, therefore job openings may not occur very often.
Credit Counselor Salary by Level of Experience
Salaries for credit counselors also vary based upon the counselor’s level of experience.
As an entry-level employee, you should expect a salary that is close to the minimum for this profession, somewhere in the range of $30,000 a year.
Your salary will likely increase after earning a few years of experience; experienced credit counselors may earn more than $70,000-$80,000 a year.
Bonuses and Additional Cash Compensation
As a credit counselor, you may also earn commissions and bonuses, along with your base salary.
These additional compensations can supplement a credit counselor’s total earning by several thousands of dollars a year.
According to glassdoor.com, on average, credit counselors earned $3,800 in additional cash compensation as of July 2020.
According to the same report, cash compensations for the best-paid credit counselors can sum up to more than $90,000 a year.
Commissions and bonuses vary widely depending on the credit counselor’s level of communication skills and customer relationship abilities.
Salaries for credit counselors are also influenced by their education and if you want to earn a starting salary that is higher than the minimum for this profession you should first earn a degree in finance, business, economics, or a related field.
Speaking more than one language may also help you get a better-paying job.
Credit counselors are in some cases required to earn a state certification before practicing this profession.
Even if this is not a requirement, certification may help you earn a higher salary.
In conclusion, becoming a credit counselor can be a financially rewarding career if you’re passionate about finance and you have good communication skills.
* Based on information from the May 2021 salary report from the BLS. The figures represent accumulated data for all states of employment for Credit Counselors. BLS data represents averages and medians for workers at all levels of education and experience. This data doesn't represent starting salaries.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.