The average collection rate for a collection agency


Disclaimer: The industry's success rate does not reflect the success rate of Fair Capital, because our agency's success rate is way higher than the average success rate.


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What is the average collection rate for a collection agency?

"What success rate should be expected from a debt collection agency," is one of the most basic questions a business will ask before hiring a collection agency. Because it's the recovery rate that’s really important when choosing a collection agency.


In the debt collection industry, liquidation, recovery, or success rate; all refer to a debt collection agency's ability to recover past-due debt on an annual basis.


The ACA International reported on it's 2014 benchmarking survey an industry-wide average success rate of 21.7% and a median success rate of 13.1%.

(source: American Collectors Association 2014 Survey)

The average debt collection success rate has ranged from 16% to 22% over the last decade. In 2014 the ACA reported a liquidation rate of 21.7%, 2012 - 16.5% in 2010 - 11.7%, 2008 - 13.8% and 2006 - 16.2%


Liquidation rates by the Y



Liquidation rates by industry

(source: American Collectors Association 2012 & 2013 Survey)

Keep in mind that the liquidation rate does not reflect literally into an expected recovery rate for an individual account. This is because the liquidation rate will be impacted by new inventory being placed.


The survey calculated the liquidation rate by dividing a collection agency's gross amount collected during a 12-month period by the amount of new business placed over the 12 month period. The survey did not track the recovery of an individual account over the life of the account.


There are many factors that will affect a collection agency's success rates, but perhaps the most notable is time. Across the industry, the likelihood of write-off increases by approximately 1% with every passing week after the past-due date. Simply put, the recovery rate of accounts that are past due for longer than 6 months statistically drops in half. That likelihood drops to only about 25% after 12 months.


You may not be very impressed by the industry's success rate and that is an indicator of just how difficult it is to collect past due receivables. However, the good news is that the industry's success rate does not reflect the success rate of Fair Capital, because our agency's success rate is way higher than the average success rate.


Disclaimer: Any and all information is not intended to be, nor is it, legal advice. Please consult your attorney for information concerning allowable rates of interest.

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