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If you’ve been taking steps recently to improve your credit score, good for you! You may be wondering how often your credit score updates. How soon can you expect to see the results of your hard work?
Before your credit score can reflect these positive changes, your creditors have to report your credit activity to the credit bureaus. Most creditors send information to the credit bureaus once every 30 to 45 days.
This means that, once you factor in the time it takes for the bureau to incorporate the new information, it can take up to 60 to 90 days before you start to see changes from recent activity. But don’t be discouraged; as long you continue to make payments on time and handle your debt responsibly, your credit score should improve soon. Read on to learn more about how credit score updating works.
Here’s what we’re going to cover:
- How often is your credit score updated?
- How often do credit bureaus update their reports?
- How fast does your credit score change?
- What is rapid rescoring?
- Tips for raising your credit score
- How to view your credit score
- Oportun: Affordable financing, no credit history required
- Your credit score is based on the information currently listed in your credit reports. As new information gets added to your credit reports, your credit score will be updated to reflect it.
- Some creditors may report your credit activity to only one or two of the credit bureaus. Others may report to all three bureaus, but at different times during the month. This means your credit reports may get updated at different times.
- The number of credit accounts you have open, the length of your credit history, and the type of recent activity can all affect your credit score.
How often is your credit score updated?
Many people think their credit score is a fixed number. But your credit score is actually recalculated regularly.
Your credit score is based on the information in your credit reports at the time of calculation. This means that as the information in your credit report changes, your credit score may change as well. Positive changes to your credit activity must be listed in your credit reports before they can help your credit score.
What’s the difference between a credit report and a credit score?
Your credit report shows information about your credit activity, including credit accounts, balances, and payment history.
Your credit score is a number between 300 and 850 that gives businesses an idea of how likely you are to make payments on time. Your credit score is calculated based on the information in your credit report. The higher the number, the better your credit score.
How often do credit bureaus update their reports?
The three major credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion, all create credit reports based on the information they receive from your creditors. Your credit report from each of these credit bureaus may look a little different, because each bureau may receive slightly different information.
Some creditors report your credit activity to only one or two of the credit bureaus, rather than all three. Others report your credit activity to all three credit bureaus, but may report at different times during the month. And some alternative lenders may not report to any bureaus! This means your credit reports may get updated at different times or not at all.
Some alternative lenders may not report your credit or payment activity to the bureaus at all. Always check to make sure your lenders report credit activity to the bureaus so that you can see the benefits of your positive activity reflected in your credit reports and credit score.
If you want to know when the most recent information was updated in your report, look for the “Date Updated” line in each credit report.
How fast does your credit score change?
How soon will your credit score change depends on several factors.
Number of open accounts
If you have several open credit accounts, your credit score may change multiple times during the month as the credit bureaus receive new information. It may even change daily.
If you have only one credit account, your credit score may be updated less frequently.
Length of credit history
How quickly improved credit habits affect your score is impacted by the amount of information in your credit report.
Your credit score takes into account your total credit activity over the past seven years. If you have a long history of poor credit, it may take more time for your credit score to improve. If you’ve only been using credit for a short time, your credit score may get updated faster.
Types of changes
Big changes in credit activity usually bring faster results. If you pay down a large credit card balance, for example, it can dramatically lower your credit utilization ratio and quickly impact your credit score.
What is credit utilization ratio?
Your credit utilization ratio compares your total credit balance to your overall credit limit. In other words, it shows how much of your available credit you’re currently using.
To earn and maintain a high credit score, it helps to keep your credit utilization ratio to 30 percent or less.
Another major change is the disappearance of a derogatory mark from your credit report. You can get derogatory marks from late payments, bankruptcies, foreclosures, and repossessions.
These negative marks bring down your credit score, but usually disappear from your credit reports after seven years (bankruptcies can stay on for up to 10 years). Once this period is up, you should see an improvement in your credit score.
Smaller changes in credit habits can also increase your credit score, but more slowly.
What is rapid rescoring?
If you plan to apply for a mortgage soon, your mortgage lender may request that new payment information be added to your credit reports. This is called rapid rescoring and is a method of getting faster credit score results.
Unfortunately, you can’t request rapid rescoring for yourself. Your mortgage lender must make the request—and you may have to pay a fee for it. But if you’ve recently made big changes to your credit activity and you’re eager to qualify for a mortgage, it’s worth considering.
Tips for raising your credit score
Depending on what your credit score is to start with, it can take anywhere from months to years to raise it as high as you would like. Don’t be discouraged; building a positive credit history now can benefit you for years to come.
What’s the best way to raise your credit score? Here are some general guidelines that may help:
- Make all your debt payments in full by the due date
- Maintain a credit utilization ratio of 30 percent or less
- Consider keeping older credit accounts open to show an established history
- Apply for new credit only when you really need it
- Use a mix of credit cards and loans
All these factors go into your credit score, so by paying attention to them you may gradually improve it.
How to view your credit score
As you continue to work on raising your credit score, you’ll probably want to check your progress from time to time.
You can request a free copy of your credit reports once a year at AnnualCreditReport.com. Your credit reports do not usually contain your credit score, but your creditor may allow you to view your credit score for free. Check your credit card, loan, or even bank statement to see if this service is available to you.
Oportun: Affordable lending options designed with you in mind
Now that you understand how often your credit score updates, you can learn about how Oportun may be able to help you if you’re looking for affordable credit options. Visit our homepage to learn about:
- Personal loans
- Credit cards
- Secured personal loans
- And more!
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