You believe in a future where all people — regardless of income or background — deserve financial security through the highest quality financial counseling, coaching and education. 


As an Accredited Financial Counselor, you help make it a reality.

Why the AFC?

  • Confidence

  • Credibility

  • Impact

The Accredited Financial Counselor (AFC) certification provides you with the knowledge and experience to meet individuals and families where they are, help them build a strong financial foundation, realize their goals and achieve lasting financial well-being.

How can I use my AFC?

AFC professionals work in a variety of capacities across the field of personal finance. Explore our career center to learn more about the career pathways you can take with an AFC credential. 

Government / Military Careers

Education / Academia Careers

Woman speaking to someone on a video call on a laptop

Careers in Private Practice

Nonprofit/Service Careers

What Makes the AFC Different?

We are proud to be NCCA-accredited.

NCCA Accredited Certification Program Badge

The AFC’s compliance with NCCA standards shows that the educational content and testing for the AFC is psychometrically sound and has been developed, maintained, and governed at the highest standard. NCCA accreditation sets the AFC certification mark apart from all other financial counseling certifications in the field. It confirms to employers, colleagues, and clients the rigor and quality of the AFC education.

In good company: View FINRA’s list of accredited designations.

How do I earn my AFC?
4 Steps to Certification

The following steps can be completed in any order; every candidate’s journey is different. You will have 3 years from the date of enrollment to complete the program.


5 pathways to choose from to satisfy the educational requirements to be eligible to sit for the exam.


1 proctored examination offered on a rolling basis at over 300 locations nationwide.


1000 hours are required. There are many ways to earn hours and past experience may count.


3 years from enrollment to complete all requirements including signing the AFCPE Code of Ethics.

How will AFCPE support me? 

Registering for the AFC is a big decision. We want to make sure you have a strong community, staff support, and career guidance on your journey to earning the AFC.

Office Hours

Feeling stumped? 
Join our Education Team during virtual office hours to get your content questions answered!

Connected Community

A virtual discussion board to connect with other AFC candidates. Share study tips, experience hour opportunities, &  more!

Career Center

Find your dream
financial counseling

job or internship.

Special Pricing

Learn more about our special pricing, including:
  • AFC exam discounts for students
  • Group pricing
  • Military educational benefits
  • myCAA for eligible military spouses

Become an AFCPE Member

Take advantage of the AFCPE Candidate Membership rate – all the benefits of professional membership at a discount. As a member, you save $50 on the AFC exam and gain access to free professional development webinars to support your experience hours. Great networking and so much more!

How do I maintain my certification?

Learn more about post-certification requirements.

Pay Annual Fee

Due each year by June 30.

Earn 30 CEUs

Due every two years by June 30. Always due in an even year.

Re-sign Code of Ethics

Upholding the highest standards.

Looking for more information?

Register for a free AFC Info Session!

A no-pressure, informative session to get all the information you need to make your decision.

Wanna be an AFC? info sessions are held monthly from 3-4 PM ET.

Recordings are available to registered attendees.



Ready to get started? Find your Pathway!

Self-Paced Study

Our most popular and most flexible pathway to certification . For self-starters, career-changers, and others who want to complete their certification in their own time, at their own pace.

Financial Education Challenge

For those who have completed applicable coursework in personal finance, financial planning, consumer sciences, or equivalent curriculum from a regionally-accredited college or university.

Professional Designation Challenge

If you hold a CFP®, CPA, ChFC or CFA designation, this may be the pathway for you. These professionals are exempt from a portion of the AFC core competencies.

Registered Education Programs

AFCPE partners with over 30 institutions-click to see if your school is one of them. Interested in a more traditional classroom experience? Check out our non-degree options.

Independent Trainer

Designed for groups who want a more personalized learning experience. If you are an organization or group seeking a more curated, customized education experience, then the Independent Training Pathway may be right for you!

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