How Long It Takes for a $0 Balance to Show on Report

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Dear Experian,

How frequently is one's credit record updated? If I paid off an old debt and want my credit report to reflect a $0.00 balance, how long does it take to show up? How can I speed along the process?


Dear SAL,

Lenders typically update account information once a month. The length of time it will take for the zero balance to appear will depend on how close the payment is made to the reporting date.

If you make the payment right after information has been updated, it could be 30 days or more before the balance is reported. If you make the payment just before the reporting date it could be just a short time before the update is made.

Credit Card Balance May Not Show Zero Even If You Pay In Full Every Month

However, the amount reported to Experian is the balance on your billing statement. To be certain that a zero balance appears in your credit report you must pay off any existing balance and then not make any charges for a full billing cycle. That will ensure that the lender's records show a zero balance and that the zero balance is subsequently reported to Experian.

Thanks for asking.
- The "Ask Experian" team