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How Long Does It Take To Repair My Credit?

Daniel Teo

Sep 06, 2018 3 min read

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How Long Does It Take To Repair My Credit?
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    If you’re looking to get your financial house in order, you may ask yourself: “How long does it take to repair my credit?” It takes time – but it is possible! There are three common mistakes that can negatively impact your credit score:

    • Missing payments on

    • Using too much of your or maxing out your credit cards.

    • Applying for credit cards you don’t need and you don’t use.

    When these mistakes happen, a record of the infraction will make its way onto your credit report. If potential lenders see a pattern of these mistakes in your credit history, they may be less likely to approve a personal loan or offer a loan with a higher interest rate. Either way, they may see you at risk of potentially not paying back the money they lend. 

    Thankfully, your recent credit activity plays a larger role in calculating your credit score than old information. No matter what shape your credit is in, it is possible to rebuild and repair it.

    How long does it take to repair my credit?

    The time it takes to rebuild your credit depends on the status of your delinquent accounts. There is no quick fix – repairing your credit score may take some time. Depending on your situation, it could take a few months or even a couple of years.

    The amount of time that negative information will stay visible on your credit report depends on what’s reported. You can expect this negative information to stay on your credit report for the following number of years: 

    Your credit score is calculated to reflect your credit habits. A missed payment, for example, may initially have a significant negative impact on your score, but that impact will diminish over time if you’re able to demonstrate that you can manage it well.

    3 steps to repair my credit

    Keeping the common mistakes in check will have the greatest positive impact on improving your credit health.

    • If you’ve missed some payments, work to bring those accounts back up to date. Try to make minimum payments on time; if you can, pay the balance in full. 35% of your credit score depends on this payment history.

    • Do a quick calculation of all of the credit that you have available to borrow and try not to use more than 30% of that total amount. For example, if you have two credit cards with a combined limit of $7,000, try to keep your balance under $2,100 ($7,000 x 30%). It also happens that your counts for 30% of your credit score.

    • Find the right credit card that meets your needs and stick with it. Frequent credit card applications can lower your credit score by 10%, while a long credit history can increase your score by up to 15%. A secured credit card can be easier to apply for than traditional unsecured cards and can help you build positive credit history.

    Are there programs to help me repair my credit?

    Some companies offer specialty financial products that can help you build a positive payment history, which is the number one factor that influences your credit score. Borrowell's Credit Builder can help you improve your payment history and positively influence your credit score. By making regular payments, you can build up credit history that shows up on your credit report. As you continue adding good payment history to your credit report, you should see your credit score improve over time.

    Use Borrowell to monitor your credit score

    Regularly monitoring your credit score, through a free credit score check and a free credit report with Borrowell, can help with making practical decisions to better your financial well-being. Repairing damaged credit can take some patience, but the benefits that come with an improved credit score and the savings from lower interest rates are worth the effort. 

    Want to improve your credit score?

    Use Borrowell to get your credit score for free and receive personalized tips on how to improve your credit score.

    Get your Free Credit Score

    Daniel Teo headshot.
    Daniel Teo
    Personal Finance Expert

    Daniel Teo is a personal finance expert and travel writer based in Toronto. With a passion for financial literacy and travel, his stories touch on what’s possible when you achieve financial goals. His work has appeared in The Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star, and CBC.

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