How Long Does It Take To Rebuild Credit?

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How Long Does It Take To Rebuild Credit?

If you’ve ever had a credit score dip for whatever reason (missed payments, too many inquiries, a high utilization ratio), you know it can be stressful trying to figure out how long it will take to rebuild your credit. 

Don’t despair just yet! This guide will show you exactly how long it takes to rebuild your score from its sickly state and have lenders green-lighting your applications once more. 

From quick fixes to long-term remedies, let’s dive into the time for how long it takes to rebuild credit and the secrets to fast credit rehabilitation. 

If you are working on building up your credit or improving your credit score, MoneyLion is here to help! MoneyLion offers a free and convenient way to find offers from our trusted partners to help you improve your credit — such as credit monitoring, credit report disputes, and getting credit by paying bills. 

How long does it take to repair credit after late payments?

Late payments can linger on your credit reports for up to 7 years, so improving your score isn’t an overnight process. However, depending on how drastic the credit repair remedies you take are, you may be able to see improvements as soon as 30 to 45 days. 

That said, when it comes to significant improvements it generally takes anywhere from 6 to 12 months of smart credit practices.  

Making on-time minimum payments going forward and keeping other credit factors in check can gradually improve your standing. The key is patience, staying the course, and giving negative marks time to age and matter less.

Recommended: How to Raise Your Credit Score By 200 Points

How long does negative information stay on your credit report?

Negative information, such as late payments, bankruptcy, and collections, will stay on your credit report for seven years. However, you may have some options when it comes to getting a bankruptcy off your credit report early

The age of negative information is a major factor in how it will affect your credit score. Note that older negative information has less of an impact than recent negative items. 

The number and severity of poor credit behaviors can also influence how long negative information will remain on your credit report. For example, if you have numerous delinquencies or high balances on other accounts, those can hurt your credit history longer than a single late payment or a smaller collection balance would linger. 

How long does it take to fix a credit score?

The time required to fix credit depends on several factors such as the severity of the damage caused by late payments or defaults, how long ago those events took place, your ability to pay off debt, and your behavior over a long period. 

Credit score recovery after a late payment

Everyone makes mistakes. If you’ve made a late payment recently, don’t panic. Your credit score does not drop overnight when you miss a payment. It may take a few months for the full impact of a late payment to show up on your credit report. 

Usually, if a payment is just a few days late, you’ll incur a late fee, but it won’t be reported to the bureaus as delinquent. Once the payment is 30 days late, creditors typically report. After 60 and 90 days, the impact on your score becomes more serious.

If you do find yourself in a situation where you’ve missed a payment, make sure to catch up ASAP. It’s also advisable to reach out to your creditors before they’ve reported the information to the credit bureaus and ask th”em to refrain from doing so. 

Credit score recovery after bankruptcy

Typically, insolvency will display on credit reports for seven years if you filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy and 10 years for Chapter 7. Unlike a simple missed payment, this situation can be difficult to rebound from — it may take a few years to remedy.

During those 7 to 10 years, it may be almost impossible to obtain credit or apply for certain types of loans, like mortgages or business loans. The long timeframe for the recovery to your credit score is purposeful; it’s designed to ensure financial responsibility and caution moving forward. 

Although your credit score drops immediately after filing for bankruptcy, it’s possible to rebuild your credit history and set yourself up for future financial success through responsible financial behavior and careful planning over time. 

Credit score recovery after other setbacks

If your credit score is battered and bruised after facingdivorce, job loss, medical bills, or anything similar, know that youcan still rebuild credit with time. 

Moving frowards from a financial knockout may feel like an uphill battle, and just thinking about where to start has you gasping for air. But don’t wave the white flag yet! You’ve got a secret weapon in your corner that packs a mighty punch – time.

Small, consistent steps are the jabs that’ll put you back on the winning path. Little by little, those smart money moves will start chipping away at the damage. 

Recommended: Why Does My Credit Score Go Up and Down?

8 steps toward rebuilding your credit

Rebuilding your credit doesn’t happen overnight, but there are things you can do right now to make sure that it starts improving as soon as possible.

1. Monitor your credit report regularly

Knowing what your credit report says allows you to identify areas that could use some improvement. You can get a free copy of your report from all three major bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) once a year by visiting

If you’ve recently been denied credit based on the information in your report, you can also request a free copy of your report directly from the bureau.

2. Dispute errors on your credit report

Look for errors or inaccuracies on each of your credit reports and dispute them immediately with the respective bureau. Errors are typically grounds for an investigation. If the credit bureau finds the information is wrong, updating the account may lead to an increase in your credit score. 

You may also want to contact the credit bureau company to report any incorrect information. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau provides contact information for the bureaus and specific instructions for filing a dispute. 

3. Consider a credit-builder loan

A credit-builder loan is a tool to help rebuild your credit score. It works by allowing you to borrow a certain amount of money, typically a few hundred dollars, that goes into a special account that is maintained by the lender. 

As you make regular payments over time, they’ll get reported to major credit bureaus, and you’ll begin to establish a positive track record with creditors. 

The benefit of a credit builder loan is in how it bulks up your credit muscles so lenders see you for who you really are – a trustworthy beast. 

And since the loan amount is usually tiny, you should be able to manage it without putting too much strain on your finances. 

4. Work toward paying down existing debt

Paying off credit card debt is one of the quickest ways to help boost your credit score. The amount of debt you owe is one of the major factors that determines your credit score, so getting rid of it can make a huge difference in your overall rating.

And make sure to pay off outstanding balances in full to help erase these unfavorable items from your report and restore some points to your overall score. 

5. Make payments on time

One of the most important factors when rebuilding your credit is paying bills on time every month. Late payments stay on your report for seven years, and lowering this number is critical in improving the overall outlook of your finances. 

One tip is to ditch the sticky note reminders and put your bill payments on autopilot! Opt in to automatic payments or download a financial tracking app that notifies you when an upcoming payment is due.

6. Ask for a credit limit increase

A credit limit increase can be a quick way to reduce your credit utilization by adding additional available credit. If you have an established credit history with the credit card issuer, you might have a good chance they’ll bump up your limit. 

Just make sure to avoid actually using the extra credit. Instead, the trick is to keep your credit utilization rate low while also paying down your balances.

7. Keep old accounts open

Although closing out your credit card accounts doesn’t automatically bring down your credit, it could have a domino effect that affects your score. 

If you have fewer accounts, that means you have less credit available to you, so your credit utilization ratio will be higher even if you’re charging the same amount on your credit cards as you always have. You may want to leave old credit card accounts open for that reason.

8. Curb your spending

Curb spending on unnecessary items and manage your finances wisely. You can do this by creating a budget and setting financial goals. Start by tracking income and expenses for a few months so that you have an accurate picture of where your money is going. 

Make sure to set realistic targets for different categories like housing, groceries, entertainment, and transportation. Once these targets are established, stick to them as closely as possible to keep spending within limits. 

Easy steps to rebuild your credit score fast

Understanding how credit works, checking your report regularly for errors, and making sure all payments are made on time are all good places to start when trying to rebuild damaged or low scores. With diligent effort and some patience, you should be able to get back into good standing before too long.


Can I rebuild my credit score in less than a year?

You can create healthy habits over the course of a year that will help build your credit score in time. You should notice a gradual improvement which could have noticeable impacts in less than a year.

Can I rebuild my credit faster if I have a higher income?

Although your income isn’t factored directly into your credit score, having more money means you’re more likely to pay your bills on time, which will have a positive impact on your credit score.

Will paying off all my debts quickly improve my credit score faster?

In some cases, paying off all your debts will actually bring your credit score down because the number of open accounts plays into your score. Paying on time may be the greater priority.

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