As you’re likely now discovering, late payments can have a lot of weight on your credit scores. If that wasn’t bad enough, late payments can also stay on your credit reports for many years. Yikes! The good news, late payments are not difficult to get removed. I’ve been able to remove several late payments (yeah, I’m guilty) and I’m going to share how I was able to pull it off.
How Long Do Late Payments Stay On Your Credit?
If you don’t have your late payments removed from your credit, they can stay on your credit report for a full 7 years! Late payments hurt you the most when they first hit your credit. As the years pass by, the effects on your credit scores will become less and less. Here’s the problem, if a lender sees this, it could knock you out of a loan or credit. It happened to me. Even when you catch up, late payments can stay on your credit report. While they will report as paid, it’s still a huge red flag for lenders, banks, etc. Ready to learn how to get your late payments removed from your credit? Let’s get to it!
(1) Requesting A Goodwill Adjustments
By far, requesting a goodwill adjustments is going to be the easiest way to get a late payment removed from your credit. If you have a good payment history with the creditor anyway, you stand a high percentage chance to have it removed. You will need to write a letter to them. In this letter, you want to explain the scenario that caused you to be late. You want to explain this was a mistake or accident. Lastly, you want to request that the late payment be removed from your credit report. This is usually called a goodwill or forgiveness letter. *Note: If you have multiple late payments, this one can be a tough one to pull off.
(2) Sign Up For Auto Installments
If your goodwill letter doesn’t do the job or you’d rather try something else, another method you can use is agreeing to auto payments. If you’ve been late with payments in the past because you simply forget, this may help you out. A lot of our community members have used this method when a goodwill letter didn’t work. This is a win-win for everyone involved. First, the creditor will know your future payments will be made on time. You will get your late payments removed (if they agree). Plus, you won’t have pesky late fees and interest charges.
(3) Pay It All Off
Now, another successful strategy members have talked about is paying off the whole debt as long as all late payments are removed off the account. Remember, even if you pay it all off, that account can stay on your credit report for 7 years! This is super effective if you have the money to pay off the creditor. As we always say, make sure you get it in writing that they will remove all the late payments off your credit report. If you don’t get this in writing, the creditor may update your balances to zero but it will still show on your credit report. I had a few of these on my account. I talked to someone and they promised to have it removed. The reason I needed it removed was because I was applying for a mortgage and needed 25 more points. I had already exhausted all my other options, this was it or I wasn’t getting a home through this company. Long story short, they never removed it from my credit. I called them back, told them who I spoke to and told them he said he would remove it. The lady said “we don’t do that.” It’s still on my credit report today. Before you ever pay a penny, GET IT IN WRITING! Trust me on that one. Make sure you write down everyone you talk with, document the whole event from start to beginning. Make sure you record names, dates, times, wait periods, everything you can think of. I record my phone calls now, I’d suggest you do the same. You never know when you’ll need to present that evidence, just in case you run into a similar situation. This is for your protection, so do your due diligence.
Lastly, you do have the right to dispute the late payment as being “inaccurate.” Now, we’re not saying to go “lie.” Just so we’re clear on that, but if anything is not correct, you speak up for yourself! Don’t just let it go, you take the time to get it corrected, removed or both. Make sure you check your credit report for inaccuracies, such as amounts, dates, etc. If they’re not correct, you can file a dispute. If for any reason they can’t verify your account information (which is required), you may be able to get those late payments removed. When it comes to accounts, they’re bought and sold all the time. Plus, they are known for having trouble keeping accounts verified and accurate. If so you see something wrong, fight it all the way.
(5) Call The Professionals
If all else fails and you’re out of ideas, you can always call the big guns in. Large credit repair companies are well known for getting these types of accounts removed from your credit report, as well as others. They have additional resources and sources you don’t have, so take advantage of it. If you haven’t been paying attention to your credit report, we highly recommend you begin monitoring your credit. Your credit is super important and I can’t state that enough. Here at Credit Shout, you can get signed up on our list and get credit advice. You can use free platforms like Credit Karma and Credit Sesame to monitor your credit on a regular basis. If you need help removing items from your credit report, get that help.
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