Re: Please help!!! Need advice before it lands on my credit report
That's a scary surprise! Priority one needs to be getting that balance paid as fast as possible (like, today). Thankfully, you've got some options. If you know you won't be able to pay this in full, you should put it on a card with a good intro rate. I know you just got the Citi Diamond Preferred, and that has 0% interest for 18 months, so that's how you should pay this amount. Yes, your FICO will drop temporarily while you have the high balance, but it will recover in full once you pay it off (in the mean time, you shouldn't be apping for anything new anyway, so the lowered FICO score isn't even an issue for you). This way, you avoid a collection reporting, AND you pay no interest on the amount owed in the mean time. Seems like an easy choice to me.
Starting Score: 617 (EQ 6/10/12) Current Score (8/28/13): EQ: 691 EX: 706 TU: 700 Goal Score: 700 Discover it $4,500 (02/2001); Amex PRG (Backdated to 01/2006); Amex ZYNC (Backdated to 07/2006); Wells Fargo Cash Back Visa $5,500 (12/2011); Citi Diamond Preferred MC $2,000 (07/2012); B of A Cash Rewards Visa Signature $5,000 (02/2013)