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How to Successfully Dispute Your Credit Report

Jun 14, 2008
Correcting credit errors such as charge offs and collections is not usually performed overnight. However, it is a quicker process if you dispute items in the proper order.

Bad credit items impact your score differently depending on their severity. Recent judgments and collections are often the most damaging.

Ordered below is the list of negative items as they correspond to their severity.

A judgment or public record (including tax liens) are the worst item. This is because they can stay on your file for ten years.

Included in Bankruptcy also falls into the most severe category. If you filed bankruptcy these items are referred to as those discharged in the case. They are just as severe as the bankruptcy listing itself.

A single collection item can lower your score by as much as 100 points overnight. You should dispute any collection error as well as negotiate with the agency for a removal.

Foreclosure/Repossession are likewise very severe. These listings are severely damaging to your score and can keep you from getting the next mortgage or car loan.

Charge Offs, especially recent charge offs are indications of a very severe credit risk. A charge off can often lead to multiple negative credit listings. The original creditor will list the "charge off" as well as the subsequent collection agencies that purchase the debt.

A recent late payment is especially bad for those people with previously good credit. It can instantly lower a credit score that you have spent years to establish. The scoring formula believes that a late payment may be a sign of impending financial meltdown.

Moderately severe items include a 30,60,90, or 120 day late payment. These items can either be disputed with the credit bureaus or negotiated with the creditor.

The credit scoring formula is biased more towards recent late payments. Older late payments should be given a low priority in your dispute process.

Do not lose any sleep if the credit bureaus are listing old personal information. It has no impact on your credit score.

In order to quickly clean up your credit report, you must challenge the most severe items first. It does no good to focus your time and effort on insignificant items like your employer or address.
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Get your free custom credit dispute letter. Or learn how others have erased bad credit items and raised their credit rating by 50, 100, or 150 points with effective credit repair techniques.
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