I guess I need to break this down. My husband was in a bad car accident on 8-1-05. His car was totalled and he was injured, so there were an ambulance and emergency room involved. We hired a lawyer who told us not to pay them until we got the settlement. Well, here we are, 3-17-07 and still no settlement. Now, at least one of the collections is showing up on my report, and brought my score down. We couldn't have paid them anyway, because he was laid of two weeks after the accident and I was not working. We referred anyone who called us to our attorney's office.
I am working now, so I recently paid off as much as I could on all of our cards. I have also been paying all bills on time (or early), and paying more than the minimums. By the grace of God, even after the accident there were NO late payments to anybody. We did however have a discharged bankruptcy in 2003 (from a prior car accident)! We haven't opened any new accounts or applied for any either.
So my questions
1. Why, even with all on-time payments and paying down the cards, is my score going up and down, and when it goes up, it is only by a few points? I am doing everything right according to all the advice I have been given regarding raising our score(s).
2. What can we do about the collections... will paying them when we have the money help?
3. I do have a feature on one of my cards that allows me to see me FICO score every month. The one they show is at least 29 points higher than what Transunion is showing, and TU is one of the bureaus that my card pulls from. Why would it differ?
1. There can be tons of various reasons. Payment amounts...
1. There can be tons of various reasons. Payment amounts really don't matter as long as they're on time. What each creditor reports as your balance and limits monthly do for instance. Hard to say without more specific information really.
2. Try to negotiate agreements with them first that they will delete the negative information in exchange for the full payment. In either case, it's wortwhile to study FDCPA and other relevant laws as this will help you catch them doing things they shoudln't do and thus can be useful in your interactions with them. Good place for reading
3. Wamu's FICO is not the standard formula one, but the bank card enhanced one. They both are correct, just different.