My credit score has taken a nosedive from a great score of 790 to a poor score of 680, what happened?
My credit score has taken a nosedive from a great score of 790 to a poor score of 680, what happened? I have not missed any payments (to my knowledge) and I have not opened any new lines of credit. My friend told me to check my credit report to see if there is an error on it, but I don’t know how to fix credit report problems if I find any. Is there a specific bureau I should reach out to for this?
A decrease of 110 points is a very substantial change in your credit score, so it is definitely advised to take a look at your credit report to see what is going on. If you suspect there is an error you should pull your report from all three bureaus to see if it is consistent. You can get your free credit report from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion once a year from AnnualCreditReport.com. You can also visit each bureau’s website and pay for a credit report if you have already exhausted your free reports for the year. If you only want to check one credit report, it does not make a difference which bureau you choose to use.
Once you have received your credit report, check and double check it to make sure all the information on it is accurate and up to date. The five major components that factor into your credit score are as follows:
- Payment history
- Amounts owed
- Length of credit history
- New credit
- Credit utilization
Note that each credit bureau utilizes their own specific credit scoring model and therefore places different weight on each category listed above.
If you look over your information and find an inaccuracy, it is time to take action to fix your credit. You will have to file a dispute with the credit bureau from which you pulled the credit report. In order to do this you need to identify which of the following categories contains incorrect information:
- Personal identity information
- Credit Inquiries
- Public records and collections
Any inaccuracies in the personal identity information category are important to fix, but they will not have any affect on your credit score. However, errors in the other three categories will affect your credit score.
To dispute an error you will have to follow the specific guidelines of the credit bureau you are dealing with. Fortunately, they have made the process quite simple. You must be able to clearly identify the error and use evidence to explain why the information is incorrect. Whether you dispute online or via mail, make sure to keep hard copies of all the documents you send and the dates of all communication. As required by law, credit bureaus must resolve and respond to your dispute within 30-45 days.
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