Credit Advice » Report Advice » Report Details » Late Payment » Recent Late Payments Hurt Credit Scores the Most

Recent Late Payments Hurt Credit Scores the Most

Dear Experian,

Why has my credit score dropped 42 points? There is a late payment on one of my cards which has since been brought current, and four of my accounts have been paid off and have a “0” balance. Why doesn’t my score increase as quickly when I pay off accounts as it does when I miss a payment?

– KRS

Dear KRS,

There are many factors within your credit history that affect your credit scores. The single most important indicator of credit risk is a missed payment, so it will have the greatest and longest lasting impact. The more recent the missed payment occurred, the greater that impact will be, and the more missed payments you have, the longer it will take to recover.

Think about someone who has broken your trust. It takes just one action in one moment to lose your trust, but could take weeks or months or even years of positive interactions to regain it, depending on what the person did to violate your trust.

Bringing the account current is an important first step in restoring your credit scores, but to offset the risk the late payment represented, you must continue to demonstrate a current history of on-time payments. Use at least one of your credit cards, paying in full each month to avoid finance charges.  These on-time payments will add positive activity to off-set the negative in your past.

Over time your credit scores will rebound. The length of time it takes to recover will depend on how serious any other negative issues were.

Thanks for asking.
The “Ask Experian” team

Review Your Free Experian Credit Report Today

Good credit begins with knowing where your credit is today. Get started with your free Experian Credit Report, updated every 30 days on sign in. No credit card required.

Get Started for Free

Experian’s Credit Games – Skills Sprint (Part 1 of 3)

Put your credit knowledge to the test to test your fate and see how you fare. Audit your skills in our three-part challenge to try your luck!

Ask Experian for Advice

Your privacy and the information collected here.

Latest Tweets