PLUS Score, VantageScore available from Experian

Posted on Sep 10 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I know that a lender I’m about to approach will pull up my Experian Scorex PLUS score. It doesn’t seem available to me at experian.com or experianscorex.com. How can I view this score of mine before going to the lender? Or, do I just cross my fingers.

- LLI

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Why previous names appear on your credit report

Posted on Sep 10 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I am married for a second time. Can having my maiden name and two married names negatively affect my credit score? My “middle” score is 780 but I am trying to improve to 800 plus.

- TEV

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When roommates don’t pay their share of the rent

Posted on Sep 10 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I’m a college student, and today I was given an eviction notice because my roommates didn’t pay their rent on time. I was wondering what happens if they pay the amount they owe before our court date. Does it still go on my credit score? Do I have any options because I paid my rent on time?

- STO

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Using secured credit cards to improve credit history

Posted on Sep 10 2013 by

Dear Experian,

What is your opinion about using secured credit cards to improve credit history, especially if there is no current history (last entries were in 2004)?

- PAS

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Accounts are not removed immediately after bankruptcy

Posted on Sep 10 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I have completed my chapter 13 bankruptcy plan. How do I have the creditors names removed from my credit report?

- HNS

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What to do when items are stolen from your car

Posted on Sep 10 2013 by

Dear Experian,

Last night, a fairly sophisticated ring apparently swept through my neighborhood stealing from cars. Unfortunately, my wallet was stolen with my driver’s license, and yes, stupidly, my Social Security card.

Worse, an external hard drive was also taken that had tons of personal, financial information. While much of it was in a password protected document, there was also several years’ worth of statements from many of my accounts.

What is the best way to protect yourself if you feel someone may have every bit of information they would need including account numbers, Social Security numbers, etc? How can you feel secure beyond the initial 90 days?

- EER

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Collection account does not have to appear on your credit report to be legitimate

Posted on Sep 10 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I received a letter from a collection agency asking that I pay almost $3,000 for a debt that was originally a credit card opened in 1996. It seemed to come out of the blue, and when I called to get some bearings I was not given satisfactory answers or clarification. When I mentioned that this hasn’t been on my credit report they replied that they don’t report to the credit bureaus. Isn’t that what would make them legitimate? If they don’t report to the credit bureaus are they a legitimate company?

- JCK

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Settled account status more important than who closed the account

Posted on Sep 10 2013 by

Dear Experian,

How bad does it affect your credit when a creditor reports an account closed by consumer and settled for less then the balance owed?

- NIC

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The difference between a fraud alert and a security freeze

Posted on Sep 10 2013 by

Dear Experian,

What is and where can I find my Security Freeze Personal Identification Number? I have an extended fraud alert on my credit report and would like it removed. I have drafted and put together all the information to send to have it removed; however, I am lacking this Security Freeze Personal Identification number.

- IDR

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Be cautious about adding statements to your credit history

Posted on Sep 09 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I want to add a statement as to the reason of my bad credit from about seven years ago. How do I do it?

- ALC

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Updating your address when you move

Posted on Aug 29 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I recently purchased a house. My address has been changed with the bank, DMV, USPS, etc. However, I tried to get a new cell phone and was told you have not updated my address despite your website saying I don’t need to notify you when I move. Please update my address within your system so that I will no longer be restricted by information not matching up.

- JHG

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Responding to credit score factor that says proportion of balances to limits is to high

Posted on Aug 29 2013 by

Dear Experian,

Recently, I was told that my proportion of balances to credit limits is high. If I keep making payments to my credit card and keep my statement balance below 20% of my credit limit, will that help?

- ATD

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Spouse’s credit file must be frozen separately with each credit reporting company

Posted on Aug 28 2013 by

Dear Experian,

My credit report is frozen. Most of my accounts are joint with my wife. Is my wife’s report automatically frozen as well, or do I have to freeze hers separately?

- CPT

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When negative information will be removed from your credit report

Posted on Aug 28 2013 by

Dear Experian,

If the account status information says the item will be moved from negative to positive on a certain date, what determines when and why that happens?

- AJH

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Freezing your children’s credit histories

Posted on Aug 24 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I have two young children (both under the age of four). Because I have heard of even young children being the victims of identity theft, I am considering freezing their credit files until they are old enough to have their first credit cards. What is your opinion on this? Is it possible for a parent to freeze the credit of a minor? Would you do this for your own children?

- CJT

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Sharing the security code on your credit card

Posted on Aug 23 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I purchased something by phone recently and was asked for the security code on the back of my credit card. I thought it was strange, but she said she needed it to complete the transaction. I heard on the news that you should never give that out. Is that true?

- EGX

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Collection agency can try to recover 10-year-old debt

Posted on Aug 23 2013 by

Dear Experian,

My son has an account that was delinquent and charged off over 10 years ago. Yet, this evening we received a call from a credit agency looking for him regarding this debt. This is ridiculous! They said that they can continue to try to contact him no matter what. This debt is over 10 years old. What rights does my son have?

- NES

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The difference between an authorized user and a cosigner

Posted on Aug 23 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I am wondering about the difference in liability between a cosigner and an authorized user on a credit card. I understand that if I am a cosigner on my ex-wife’s credit card, I am responsible for the debt if she defaults or declares bankruptcy. Is this also true if I am not a cosigner but an authorized user? Also, if I am an authorized user, can I have my name removed from the account?

- URY

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You can “fix” your credit report without help

Posted on Aug 23 2013 by

Dear Experian,

This is the first time in a long time that I am daring to try to fix my credit report. Can I fix it myself, or do I need assistance from somebody else?

- PAE

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Being removed from an account after cosigning

Posted on Aug 23 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I am a cosigner and the secondary user on a credit card. I am not the primary user. I want to get my name off of the credit card. I called the credit card company, and they will not remove me. Is there a way to remove my name? The primary user tried also, and they still won’t do it.

- WKN

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When an ex-spouse attempts to get your credit report

Posted on Aug 23 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I was divorced a little over a year ago. My former spouse knows all of my identifying information. Could he get a copy of my credit report?

- IEB

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Why an original account and collection account both appear on your credit report for the same debt

Posted on Aug 23 2013 by

Dear Experian,

How can an item be on your credit twice, once under the original credit grantor and then under a collection agency? How does this affect the deletion date?

- NTK

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Finance charges and minimum credit card payments

Posted on Aug 20 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I have a rather simple question. My wife and I disagree on whether a finance charge is already included in the minimum payment required. She says that we should pay both the minimum amount and the finance charge on time to maintain a good credit score. I say that you only need to pay the minimum amount on time to maintain a good credit score. Paying the finance charge is like paying more towards your balance that will shorten the life of your debt but it will not affect the credit score. Who do you think is correct?

- GMN

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Impact of selling house and renting on credit scores

Posted on Aug 20 2013 by

Dear Experian,

We purchased a house four years ago and sold it recently for more than we mortgaged originally. We are now renting. Does this help or hurt our credit?

- TKL

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Inquiry for employment will not affect credit scores

Posted on Aug 20 2013 by

Dear Experian,

I have been applying for work at employment agencies. They want my permission to conduct a credit check. My concern is that I was told in the past that if too many people are doing credit checks on me, it signifies a problem and can reduce my credit scores. Is that true?

- CIC

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