Deleting an account did not raise the credit score

Dear Experian,

I recently had an account deleted from my credit report. Why didn’t my credit score go up?



Dear ENS,

Although you don’t specify in your question, I am assuming the deleted account contained negative payment history. If the account was entirely positive, please see my previous responses about the impact of closing positive accounts on credit scores. You can find the columns by entering “closing accounts” or “balance to limit ratio” in the search engine on the Ask Max homepage.

When negative information is deleted from your credit report, you probably won’t see an increase immediately. However, you almost certainly will see an improvement fairly quickly if deleting the negative information is the only change.

There are two things that influence credit scores when information is deleted from your credit history. The obvious one is that negative information is removed. That is the positive.

The less obvious issue is stability. Credit scores not only weigh the information in your credit report at a certain moment, they also consider your credit behavior over time. A stable account history showing consistent, positive behavior is important to credit scores.

By deleting negative information, a degree of instability has been introduced that the credit scoring system cannot immediately account for as a positive change.

Initially, the deleted information and the instability cancel each other out, resulting in little or no change in your credit score. Sometimes there may even be a slight decrease in the score. But, after the next payment period or two, your credit history will appear stable again, and deletion of the negative information should result in a positive change to the credit score.

Thanks for asking.

- The “Ask Experian” team

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