Advice/Tips for improving 681 FICO. Credit history incl.

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4 posts
chan35
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Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:14 pm
Location: Chicago, IL

Advice/Tips for improving 681 FICO. Credit history incl.

Postby chan35 » Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:25 pm

Hello. I'm new to the Forum. I have been monitoring my score obsessively since Spring 2012 & paying down my cc debt so that i can leave the 681 CS behind and happily join the 700 club. I also want to apply for some prime credit cards.

The "Good": In 5 1/2 years, I have never been late on w/a cc payment. I have 2 Parent Plus Student loans in deferrment that total $18,400. I plan to start making payments on these loans to help offset some of the accruing interest.

The Bad: I have two accounts in collections. One is a chiropractic debt that I NEVER received a bill for. Just happened to check my credit report in 2009 and there it was. The second is a $79 medical bill that I am honestly not sure how it slipped through the cracks. These are my debts and I plan on paying them--just not yet. I've read that once I pay them, they will be reopened & remain on my credit report for 7 years from the date of payment as opposed to the date they were assigned to my credit report which was 4 years ago. So my plan is to leave them alone for now and build up my score and obtain my dream credit cards--then pay off the collection debt when I can "afford" to take the possible re-aging hit to my credit. Does this make sense?

The Ugly: A $579 state tax lien from 2002. It is only on my Equifax CR. It dropped off of TU and EX in 2012.

At the end of January my credit card debt will be $1900 (it's currently at $2600) and by the end of February it will be ZERO. I'm hoping this will increase my score 19 points. I have six revolving credit cards and my total CL is $7800. Two of these cards are subprime; five if Capital One is also considered subprime.

Any and all advice/observations are welcome.
FICO Scores:
EQ 704
TU 789
EX 781 (via Amex on 6/11/13)


MemberSince99
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Postby MemberSince99 » Thu Jan 24, 2013 7:25 pm

You could try to contact the vultures I mean bill collectors that bought your collection accounts and offer to pay for delete. Contacting them is risky as you may be poking the bear and stir their interest in you. Then again they may decide to take an interest anyway. 79 dollars isn't much, if it's legitimate and you plan on paying, see if they will delete for full payment. Worst they can say is NO.

That tax lien should drop off soon then I would think?

That should help your score when you pay down your debt. Let a very small amount report for the max FICO score, on one card.

Basically just let the baddies age off, try to pay for deletion, and keep paying your bills, and good things will happen.

Sevenfeet
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Postby Sevenfeet » Thu Jan 24, 2013 9:34 pm

My wife has a similar problem where she has a small bill from a clothing retailer that somehow never made it to our house and managed to get in collection at some point....just $19. It's paid but the last time it was reported was in early 2010.

But one thing that helps in credit repair is time. Delinquencies ease pressure off your score after a year and especially after two years. Subsequent years get better and of course after seven, they end. So pay your debt quickly. You can complain and protest them (no harm in doing so...who knows what might happen). But once they are actually paid, then time goes back to being on your side. Your scores will continue to be impacted as long as they are not reconciled. And I'm betting since those debts aren't being reported as paid that they are still impacting your scores.

As for the tax lien, I'd give it another few months and if it's still there, complain to Equifax. It shouldn't be there after a decade (assuming it's paid).

All in all, a 681 given the details you provided isn't bad.
Cards:
American Express Platinum (NPSL)
Penfed Platinum Reward Visa ($28K)
Chase Freedom Visa ($25K)
Fidelity American Express ($20K)
American Express Blue Cash Preferred ($20K)
Bank of America Cash Rewards MasterCard ($20K)
Citi Thank You Preferred Visa ($9.5K)
Chase Sapphire Preferred ($7.5K)
US Bank Cash + Visa Signature ($7K)
Discover IT ($4K)

chan35
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Posts: 25
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:14 pm
Location: Chicago, IL

Postby chan35 » Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:15 pm

MemberSince99 and Sevenfeet, thanks for taking the time to respond. I'm heeding your advice and will inquire w/the creditors about the possibility of deleting the baddies from my file upon payment. If they say no, I still plan on paying as I think paid looks more appealing than unpaid.

The tax lien is unpaid. I asked Equifax to remove it when it reached the ten year mark but they only replied that it can remain for 15 years. I'm guessing that is because it remains unpaid. Not sure why TU and EX removed it if that's the case. The tax lien is in Georgia and Equifax is there as well, so maybe there's a correlation. If so, I suspect it will remain until 2017. Yikes! My ignorance created this mess and I have learned some valuable lessons.

Thanks again for your help.
______________________________________________________________________________________________________

FICOS
EQ: 681 1/2013

"FAKOS"
EQ: 674 1/2013
EX: 672 1/2013
TU: 694 1/2013
FICO Scores:

EQ 704

TU 789

EX 781 (via Amex on 6/11/13)



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