Credit inquiries: hard inquiries – those resulting from an application with a creditor – will stay on your credit report for 2 years, but only impact your credit scores for approximately 2-3 months.
Tip: don’t apply for more credit than you actually need!
Late payments: a 30, 60, 90 or 90+ late payment stays on your credit report for 7 years after the date of the missed payment. Example: if you were 30 days late on your Citibank credit card in April 2020, that would come off your credit report in April 2027. Remember, creditors don’t report your payment as late until it is 30+ days late.
Tip: Bring any missed payment current as quickly as you can to avoid the account continuing to be in a delinquent status and ultimately being charged off and going to collections.
Collection or charged-off accounts: if an account goes into a charged-off status or gets sold to a collection agency, the account can stay on your credit report for 7 years from the “Date of First Delinquency” with the original creditor. If you pay the account in full or even settle the account, it will still stay on for 7 years from the date of first delinquency with the original creditor.
Please note: The Date of First Delinquency is the date the account first became delinquent and was never again brought current.
Tip: A collections agency that purchases a charged off account CANNOT change the Date of First Delinquency.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy: a Chapter 13 bankruptcy stays on your credit report for 7 years from the filing date.
Tip: A Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows you to keep your property in exchange for partially or completely repaying your debt.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: a Chapter 7 bankruptcy stays on your credit report for 10 years from the date the bankruptcy was filed.
Tip: A Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a type of bankruptcy that can clear away many types of unsecured debts. If you’re far behind on your bills and don’t have the means to afford monthly payments and living expenses, filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy could be a last resort to help you reset your finances but will harm your credit scores.
Paid Closed Accounts: credit cards and loans that are closed and paid as agreed will remain on your credit report for 10 years from the date.
Tip: These accounts will neither help nor harm your credit score.
Open and active accounts: credit cards that are open with or without a balance; and loans that are open and have a balance will stay on your credit report indefinitely.
Tip: The number one influence on your credit score is the timeliness of payments. Keep all of your open and active credit accounts paid on-time or at least within 30 days of the due date.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Can a credit repair company remove a Chapter 7 bankruptcy that was discharged 3 years ago from my credit report?
We hear this all the time – credit repair companies that promise to remove accurate bankruptcy information from the credit report. This is a scam! If you truly filed for a bankruptcy, it will remain on your credit report for 7 years (Chapter 13) or 10 years (Chapter 7). The credit repair company is stringing you along, taking your money each month as they continue to promise the impossible.
I’m trying to “clean up” my credit report. Should I dispute closed, paid as agreed accounts to get them off my credit report?
You want to keep the positive credit information (paid off mortgage, car loan, credit card, etc.) on your credit report. The positive record will continue to help your credit score even when it’s paid and closed. A portion of your credit score is your length of credit history and these closed accounts help for a while.
Do delinquencies and collections accounts always hurt my credit scores?
Yes. However, the good news is that the impact of the harm to your scores decreases as these accounts age. So the older the delinquency or collection account, the less harm it does to your scores. That said, preventing accounts from becoming delinquent or going into collections is key to protecting your credit scores.