If you recently had a change in your credit, whether you forgot to pay a bill, defaulted on an account, or paid an outstanding credit card balance, you may be wondering: how often are credit reports updated? All of these changes can result in fluctuations of your credit score, and depending on the circumstance, they can lead to your score increasing or decreasing. By understanding how and when credit reports are updated, you can use this information to your advantage.
When Will my Credit Report Be Updated?
Typically, creditors will forward information to reporting agencies on a monthly basis, but the day within the month the information is sent will vary. Therefore, it is important to note that while creditor A might send an update to your credit reporting agency on the first of the month, creditor B might not send their update until the 15th. This means that your credit report can fluctuate every day, so it is important to have frequent access to your credit report.
Does My Credit Score Change?
Technically, your credit score does not change, as it is not a constant like your credit history. While they are based upon your credit report, credit scores are not a part of your credit report, so they are not updated. When requested, your score is calculated using the information found on your credit report. It is then discarded and will be recalculated when the time comes that another lender requests your credit reports and a credit score. Therefore, your credit score technically never changes, although it may be different each time that a lender requests it.
Can Information Be Removed from My Credit Report?
Just as certain information can be added to your credit report, other things can be removed. Federal and state laws require that certain types of information must be removed within certain time periods. For example, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy will be removed automatically from your credit report seven years after it is filed. You do not have to ask the credit reporting agency to make this change, but you should continue to monitor your credit regularly in order to ensure that this information has been removed when it was supposed to be.
How Should I Stay Updated on the Status of my Credit Report?
It is important to check your credit report in order to stay on top of the information included. This also allows you the opportunity to make changes and to challenge any mistakes you need to dispute. Consider the following steps to stay up-to-date on the current happenings of your credit report:
• Check your credit history report- This should be done at least once a year, and you should get a copy of your report to ensure that it is both accurate and complete. You may also get copies of your credit score.
• Stay patient- It is important to remember that it can take over a month for updated information to show up on your credit reports due to the reporting process of your lenders. So if you recently paid off the balance of a credit card and are anxious to see how it affects your credit score, remember that it may take some time to see that the lower balance has been reported.
• Give yourself time- If you will be applying for an auto loan, mortgage, or another major loan program, it is a good idea to check your credit reports between three and six months prior. This will allow you the time that you need to update and correct your credit report, if necessary.
By understanding when your credit report is updated, you can be better prepared for the changes that are a natural part of the credit process. Be sure to consistently monitor your credit report, and consider enrolling in a credit monitoring service to be alerted to changes as they happen. This can help you to stay up-to-date on the happenings of your credit report as they occur rather than waiting to periodically view a copy of your report. This can also make it easier to dispute changes and to get them resolved and corrected as soon as possible.