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Can credit scores bounce back after one 30-day late payment

A single late payment can tank a good credit score by 90-110 points. One late payment can remain on credit reports 7 years. It can take up to 2 years for a credit score to bounce back after a 30-day late payment.

A single 30-day late payment can tank a good credit score from 90-110 points. But after 24 months a credit score can bounce back, regaining those lost points.

Question: I had a recent late payment that affected my credit score. Initially my credit score was as follows: 707 (Equifax), 749 (Transunion) and 715 (Experian). After having a 30 day later care payment my score dropped by 40-50 points across all three bureaus. What was interesting was that once I made the payment and lender reported it as due, my score recovered almost completely. However, my Transunion score then dropped again by 40 points last few days. thoughts?

Also, when you have an isolated 30-day late payment that I had on my report a month ago and that I paid, how long will it take in general to recover the lost points? Everything else on my credit report is good (% utilization is 6%, no other late payments, good amount of revolving accounts etc…). Can my score recover 40 points or so in the next 4-5 months?

Your best bet is to request a goodwill adjustment to remove the late payment from your credit reports. Writing to your creditor, either via email or snail mail is best. If you can convince them to remove it, you'll see those points bounce back immediately.

It’s best to wait a few months to re-establish your on-time payment history before requesting a goodwill deletion. After 2-3 months of on-time payments, the creditor can see that the late payment was an anomaly. You need to prove you’re in a position to make timely payments again.

As far as recovering your score, the late payment on your credit reports can remain 7 years. If it’s only that one late payment, it can take up to 2 years for a credit score to bounce back after a 30-day late payment. That’s taking into account all other aspects of your credit profile remain the same. At the 1-year mark you may recover half the points but I can’t say for sure.

But make sure you’re reviewing your actual FICO credit scores and not credit scores from CreditKarma; and other similar sites. Sites like CreditKarma use the VantageScore 3.0 model, one that few, if any, lenders use. 

Most lenders use FICO scores which are calculated differently. While a history of late payments will impact both your FICO score and your VantageScore, the VantageScore tends to penalize late mortgage payments more harshly than the FICO scoring model.

If you don’t want to pay for the FICO scores at myFico.com, consider using a temporary 7-day trial at Credit Check Total. But you have to cancel the service before they charge your card; however, they offer real FICO credit scores for $1.

Keep sending goodwill letters requesting deletion at least once a month. Goodwill letters are the best way to recover your credit score from late payments. It doesn't matter how many times they tell you no – you only need one person to say yes, so don't give up. A deletion is the only way your score will bounce back immediately (assuming no other negative changes to your reports occur).

The best of luck to you!

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