Your Credit Score May Be Higher Soon – Here’s Why

Credit score increase
Credit score boosts are ahead for many consumers
Image by Kelly Sikkema via Unsplash

 

Life’s about to get better for a lot of people with their credit score. That all-important three-digit number may be rising soon without any effort on your part. That’s great news! All three credit bureaus - Equifax, Experian,, and TransUnion - announced that they'd review how they deal with negative credit information and make some changes.

Why Credit Scores May Rise

Equifax, Experience, and TransUnion’s recent announcement included that they intend to drop certain debt types and items of questionable accuracy from credit reports. The makeover will likely result in higher credit scores for many consumers. Changes to your credit report trigger change to your credit score since it’s the data used to power the algorithm.

The more negative information the bureaus delete from your report, the greater the impact of this change on your credit score. This is a huge change, particularly if you’re planning a big financial move soon. If you’re purchasing or refinancing a home, considering buying a car, or other major credit-based purchase, this could be a boon for you.

Changes Coming – What Will Be Deleted?

Some of the items the credit bureaus will likely cull from consumer credit reports include:

  • Traffic tickets – Citations are more than annoying, they can lower your credit score. A ticket for even a relatively minor infraction can be costly and if you forget to pay it, can cause problems. What’s worse is that you might pay it, but the governmental bureau still reports you in error or fails to delete it after the fact.
  • Tax liens – When income tax debt goes unpaid for a time, the IRS or state revenue agency can levy your property over the debt. The tax lien attaches the debt to your property, so the IRS or state can sell to recover what you owe or, if you sell, snatch part of the proceeds. This is a significant change to credit reports and scores.
  • Civil judgments – If a court judgment goes against you, and the court orders you to pay to the other party, then as soon as the judgment issues, the court reports it to the credit bureaus. It’s a negative item that can drop your score. With this change, these incidents won't be on report or part of your score calculation.
  • Medical debts – This change is significant for a huge swath of consumers. Bureaus already lessened the impact of medical debt on score calculations in the latest score algorithms. Paid medical debts will drop from the credit report and so will those owed by your insurance company.
  • Library fines – This sounds like no big deal, but people have been dogged (and even arrested) over long-forgotten library books. Don’t forget – it’s still a government agency that owns the debt and they have mighty powers. Incidences of library fines will also drop off reports according to these credit bureau changes.

Will Your Score Change?

The changes don’t mean every consumer will get an increase in their credit score. However, if you’ve got one of the above items on your report, you might land a score increase. The significance of the impact will depend on how much the negative item was dragging down your score. You might see a shift of more than 40 points according to Federal Reserve data.

Check for change and then leverage it. If you’re preparing for a major purchase like a home or auto, you may want to delay until you see the impact and then check if you’re close to a new threshold and work to further improve your score before applying. If your score rises, it might be a good time to renegotiate credit card rates for a sweeter deal.

When you’re looking to improve your credit score, check out Credit Score Keys.

 

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Impact of credit changes
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