Are you trying to fix your credit?
If you’re trying to loan a car or get a mortgage, you’ll know that you need a good credit score to get the best deals. If your score is so poor, you might not even get any deals to begin with. And when you’re not a financial expert, it can seem impossible to fix.
It doesn’t have to be! Keep reading for this guide on how long to repair credit to get your finances back on track.
How Long Can It Take to Repair Credit?
Speedy credit repair exists, and it could only take you a couple of weeks. For others, you’re looking more long-term, and it could be six months to a year.
How long it takes for personal and business credit repair will depend on various factors. These range from the number of errors that need fixing to what your goal is for why you’re improving your credit.
Most people and businesses will fix their credit because they have a goal. For example, it might be getting a better interest rate on a loan or buying a house.
Because of this, it’s vital that you get a rough time frame to get organized. For this reason, it’s often best to hire a credit repair consultant from a reputable firm.
There you’ll have excess help breaking down your issues and how to repair credit scores. You’ll get things like a credit repair alert for any changes or actions you need to take, and so much more.
Think about getting in touch with experts to help you through the process. But for now, we’ve broken down some strategies and how long you might expect them to take to get you started.
The Credit Repair Process: A Basic Timeline
Here is a basic timeline we’ve put together for the credit repair process to give you a better idea.
- Step 1: Download the credit reports, which should take half an hour
- Step 2: Review the reports for errors which could take one to two hours
- Step 3: Draft dispute letters and gather your supporting documents, which could take a few hours to a week
- Step 4: Wait for the response, which will be thirty days at most for each dispute letter
- Total time: One to six months, depending on the number of errors
Bear in mind that if you hire a credit repair service, in total, the timeline will be the same. But, a lot of the work goes on behind the scenes for you.
You’ll have an initial consultation which will take around 30 minutes. Here, you’ll consent for the company to access your credit reports and file disputes for you.
They will hand steps 2 through to 4 for you and call you to get relevant information. This could be clarification, or it could be additional documents to support your case.
At each step, you’ll remain in the loop and get updates on the progress. They’ll let you know when each dispute gets resolved and work with you to fix challenges.
The process in total will still take between 1-and 6 months. For most people using repair services, it’ll be more like three to six months. Still, it could be less if you only need a few errors fixed.
Starting Your Dispute Claims
How to repair credit starts with you going through your credit history with a fine-tooth comb. You’re looking at this point for any errors or mistakes you think could be dragging you down. This will take half an hour or thereabouts to get your scores.
You can use sites like annualcreditreport.com for this. We recommend this site as you get all three major reports in one place. This timeframe includes logging in, answering security, and downloading the three reports you’ll get.
After that, you’ll go through those reports to determine if anything is wrong. If you spot any errors, make a note of the exact details like the date and what the debt is. For those new to credit reports, this could take a few hours, but it’ll be faster if you’ve done it before.
Once you’ve done that, you need to draft dispute letters for each error. You’ll also need to locate and gather the relevant documents to support your case. Only then can you submit those errors to the bureaus.
The time for this will vary depending on your disputes and your level of organization. This is why we recommend that you keep your finances in good order. This includes having access to statements and receipts should you need them.
If you’re organized, this should only take a couple of hours. If you’re not, it could take up to a week to find what you need. This is a necessary step as the bureaus won’t do the work for you. You need to prove what you claim is correct.
If you’re going through this process alone, you’re the one who sets the pace here. If you’re going through a trusted credit repair consultant, the company should help speed things up. They’ll want to get it done as fast as possible.
When you’ve submitted your disputes, the clock will start for their official response. The credit bureaus must contact your creditors within 30 days to confirm what you say is true—or disprove it.
They must also respond to you within this timeframe. We recommend sending these letters signed for and dated. This will give you tangible evidence of the day it got delivered so you can make sure they meet the requirements.
From Response to Fixing the Issues
Once those 30 days pass, the bureau (or bureaus) must get back to you about your letters. Sometimes they will ask you for extra documents if they have more factors to verify. So, expect some communication before a resolution.
Remember that you must take up mistakes you find on all three reports with every bureau. On top of this, you might need to file a few different letters of dispute. If you see mistakes, you don’t want to do it all in one go.
Instead, you want to file a few errors within each one. This means more letters, and you might need to get them fixed in batches, adding to the timeframe.
On average, you’re looking at around three to six months to fix all the errors on an account. If there is a high number, this could take longer depending on how many batches you send.
The other side of that is if you don’t have many errors, it’s likely not to take that long. You may only be looking at one month’s waiting time. Each person’s credit history differs, so there can be considerable variance in the timeframes.
If you’re going through this process by yourself, the process will be over when it’s over. There isn’t an easy way to get a timeframe.
If you use a credit repair service, they should give a rough timeframe based on your accounts. They’ll have handled hundreds of cases, and many would likely be like yours. Use them as a baseline.
Rebuilding Your Credit Score While You Fix It
Repairing your credit is only the first step you need to take before you’re on track for a good or excellent credit score. While it takes an average of between 3 and 6 months to make repairs, it could take longer to build back your whole score.
On average, you could be looking at a year (maybe even more), but it’ll depend on where you start rebuilding your credit. To speed this up, start rebuilding your credit while waiting for errors to get fixed.
Keep up with payments to creditors to get a positive credit history. Also, work hard to reduce the debt you hold on credit cards, reducing the credit usage ratio as much as possible.
It might sound simple, but this is the two-step method of correcting credit and pleasing the credit score calculators. It’s how you’re going to get from a poor score to a great one, but patience is the key here. There are no hard and fast fixes here, and this will take time.
If you want to buy a house, give yourself six months at least to improve your score. This gives you enough time to make the improvements any mortgage lender will want to see.
How Long to Repair Credit? It’ll Vary
Unfortunately, there is no hard and fast rule on how long to repair credit. There are industry standards that bureaus must meet, but this is only a tiny part of the process.
Each credit history is unique and will come with challenges. From how organized your financial records are to how many errors you have, it all affects the timeline. The best way to get a rough idea of timescales is to go through a credit repair service.
If you think that’ll help you, contact us today. With over 35 years of service in finance, Inside Credit Repair is here to help you get back on track.