It’s nothing new to be impatient about your financial situation, but many in a financial straight find themselves wondering, “how long does it take to repair credit?”
The length of time it takes to improve your credit depends on many factors including:
- The type of credit issues you have
- How long your issues have persisted
- The exact impact on your they’ve tolled on your credit
There are many steps to take to repair credit. Over time, you can improve your credit score, as bad credit is usually not permanent. Here’s a look at how long it can take to improve it based on measures you can take.
How Long Does Negative Information Stay on My Credit Report?
If you have late payments, collections accounts, or have filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, that can stay on your credit report for seven years. That’s not the case with Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It has a 10-year life expectancy on your credit report.
A late payment or two, if you make up for it in a few days, often has little impact. If they do appear on your credit report, they have less impact over time. However, charge-offs and collections have more serious implications. These take longer to recover from in terms of your credit score and the appearance of negative information.
When Can I Start Rebuilding Credit?
If you have bad credit, you can take steps to start rebuilding it right away. Depending on where you’re starting from, the length and nature of your credit history, and the steps you take, it can be a least a year before you’ve rebuilt your credit to an acceptable level. These are some factors that influence your timetable:
- It takes longer to get back to the high credit score you once had than to get into the fair credit range.
- If you have a long credit history, it can take longer to recover from a serious mistake, while recovering from a minor mistake with limited credit is generally easier.
- Continuing to make mistakes while trying to repair your credit can make the process move along much more slowly.
Expediting the Credit Repair Process
The best way to start repairing your credit is to check your credit reports. Pay careful attention to your payment history; it’s by far the most important factor in determining your creditworthiness. Paying off outstanding debts and bringing past-due accounts up to date will help raise your credit score.
Look at your credit utilization rate as well. A utilization rate below 30% is ideal. You can calculate it by adding up all your credit card balances, finding the sum of all your credit card limits, and dividing the total balances by your limits. The lower the utilization rate, the more positively it impacts your credit.
By checking your credit score regularly, you can measure the impact certain steps are having.
Other Ways to Repair Your Credit
A secured credit card can help rebuild your credit, especially if you use it responsibly. You can even have two secured credit cards. A second one provides another potential source of positive information, and it can decrease credit utilization. Just be careful not to overspend.
Disputing errors and mistakes on your credit report can help in credit repair. But the process takes time. You first have to review your credit reports carefully, then draft dispute letters and gather the right documentation to send to the credit bureaus. The bureau you correspond with then contacts the creditor in question within 30 days. To resolve a dispute this way, it can take three to six months, depending on how many mistakes you need to correct (one minor error can take as little as a month to fix).
Contact American Credit
If you need to know how long does it take to repair credit, ask American Credit. We bypass the dispute letter process entirely. Instead, our team employs a pre-litigation approach that speeds up the path to credit repair. American Credit can help raise your credit score by as much as 100 points. How much does credit repair cost? Find out and schedule your free credit consultation by calling 855-918-0908.