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Bee, Other/Just Looking in Los Angeles, CA

My husband and I was advised to pay bills that are in collections on our credit to raise our credit score. Will this help or hurt our score?

Asked by Bee, Los Angeles, CA Thu Dec 3, 2009

We are trying to purchase a house and I am 20pts away from the credit goal and he is about 8pts. We are working with someone that has cleared a lot of negative items but it seem as if we are at a standstill. The majority of the items have been deleted with TransUnion but the same deleted items are still lingering on Experian and Equafax.

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5
Trevor Curran’s answer
First, settle any outstanding debt. If you owe money on collection accounts, charge-offs and/or judgments, make payment arrangements and get these accounts paid promptly.

Next, begin rebuilding your credit. If you have current accounts with good payment histories, or even some previous late-payment-blemishes, make sure you continue to pay those accounts on time. If you do not have any existing credit accounts then you'll need to establish several in order to create a viable credit history.

I have found that CONSUMER ACTION is an excellent resource for objective advice on all things credit related. You'll find free and sincere advice on everything from settling collection accounts to rebuilding credit to building credit from scratch on their website. http://consumer-action.org/

Beware of anyone offering to "repair" your credit! The Federal Trade Commission issued a stern warning last year that such offers are scams. Find more from the FTC HERE. http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/credit/cre13.shtm


The best way to buy a home is to have a decent credit history combined with sufficient Income and Assets for a home purchase.

The best way to have a decent credit history is to settle negative outstanding obligations and pay all your bills on time for at least two years.


Trevor Curran
NMLS #40140
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 29, 2012
Bee, It seems that you are doing something right by having many items cleared from your reports and you are close to the FICO scores you need. Be patient and persistent. Deborah has some great recommendations in her blog so I won't repeat them herein. I know you want things to improve quickly but remember, it probably took you quite a while to dig a hole Fico-wise. Keep on it and you'll be out soon. Good luck!

Risa Liebster
Keller Williams Realty
818.432.1513
http://www.TolucaLakeRealEstate.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 4, 2009
Please take a look at my blog post, Start Repairing Your Credit Scores Now.
http://www.thebremnergroup.com/start-repairing-fico-scores/

It's a good basic primer and may give you the answer you need.
Good Luck,

Deborah Bremner
REALTOR
Certified Short Sale Professional
Coldwell Banker Brentwood West
11999 San Vicente Blvd. Suite 100
Los Angeles, CA 90049
(D) 310.571.1364
(C) 310.422.4288
(F) 310.820.1457
http://www.TheBremnerGroup.com
TheBremnerGroup@gmail.com
Blogging at: http://TheBremnerGroup.com/blog
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 3, 2009
Paying off collections to raise credit scores is a tricky business. Sometimes paying off collections can LOWER credit scores.

The key is to see when the collection were last reported. If the collection agency updates the account monthly like a credit card company does, paying it off will help. If the collection was orginally reported 1+ years ago and has not updated since, paying it off may not raise your score and can even lower it.

Your credit report will show the last time the account was updated. Check to see the "Last reported" date for the collections and only pay off the ones that are reported recently.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 3, 2009
Well, although I am not a credit expert I don't see how paying bills that are in collections could possibly hurt your credit.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 3, 2009
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