How to Choose a College Admissions Consultant

This is a question that we get often. We’ve addressed when you should hire a college admissions consultant, but this post will dig deeper into how best to find a consultant that fits your needs. We might be a bit biased, but realize that our program works best with students that are looking for a very in-depth and intense process. We know that this is not fitting for everyone. Keep reading for our thoughts on how to identify to the best choice for you and your family.  

Decide what you need (before you start searching.)

Starting your search before you’ve clearly identified what you’re looking for is a lot like going to the grocery when you’re starving. You’ll get sucked into a bunch of options that don’t always end up being what you need. It’s important to sit down with your child and assess where they are in the college process, flesh out exactly what you need help with, and discuss how much work they’re willing to commit to. We cannot stress enough how vital it is to be on the same page with your child before starting the process. We’re often approached by parents of freshmen or sophomores who want their kids to start the process early, but their child might not be ready to dive in head first.

Do you need help deciding which schools to tour? Maybe your child has a lot of potential but you aren’t sure how to help steer them in the right direction. Does your child just need help with essays? How motivated are they within the process? Having these conversations with your child helps set standards and find consulting firms that can give you what you’re looking for. 

Look at your options.

Generally speaking, you’ll have two: work with a larger firm or stick with a local consultant. There are pros and cons for both and they vary in terms of intensity. If you work with a local consultant, they’ll be well versed as it comes to high schools in your area. They’ll know those schools well, but might not have metrics for comparison to other students. We’ve had a lot of clients who come to us after working with their local consultant, and the feedback has generally been that their local person only scratched the surface.

At TKG, we exclusively work with students over the phone, so if your child needs to work with someone in person, you should consider finding someone local. When we start working with students early, we’re able to help them find schools to tour and create an application strategy. It’s a good fit for very driven students who are willing to put in the work. We come into your family for a while, so again, it’s best to talk with your child about how comfortable they are with either option and go from there.

Settle on an option that you’re comfortable with.

Your decision should make sense economically and in terms of time spent with the consultant. Know what you’re getting into before you decide to start the work. It’s an investment, but a worth-while one if you’re serious about getting into your dream school.


We have packages for students of all ages. Reach out if you’d like to hear more.