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Settlement and 90-Day Late Recovery Journal (Progress reports etc)

Your FICO® Scores can impact your loan interest rates, terms, approvals and more.
Regular Contributor

Settlement and 90-Day Late Recovery Journal (Progress reports etc)

Since I have gained so much encouragement and knowledge from others here, I thought I'd start my own thread to document my rebuilding/recovery as it happens, in hopes that it might encourage someone else in a similar situation. 

 

The situation thus far:

 

MID-NOVEMBER, 2018:

* One 90-Day late, at this point 1-2 months old (depending on which credit bureau you ask).

* Settlement on a hefty credit card bill on ONE card, just settled but not reported. (Settled with the bank, no charge-offs, no collection agency involved.) The other cards with the same bank (BofA) are at low-90% utilization but are up to date. These cards have now been closed and I'm keeping up with the payments.

* No current reported open lines of credit. I just had a store card closed (they got wind of my troubles) but I also just opened a nice little secured card (Green Dot, who didn't do a hard pull) that has not reported to the bureaus yet.

* No other documented baddies on my report. Average age of accounts is about 10 years. Several (all now closed) lines of credit, CCs and a car loan.

* FICO scores in mid 500s. See my sig for starting FICOs.

 

NOVEMBER 30, 2018:

Experian now has my BofA settlement reported. My score with Experian shot up 70 points to 609! I was under the impression that a settlement being reported could damage my score (and I'm sure that's true) but I'm guessing that the dramatic lowering of my overall debt offset that? Plus, my utilization, while still way too high, is not quite as high as it was before. 

 

That's it for now. A few days ago I checked to see if I prequalified for any cards (aiming for secured) and they were all like HELL NO. I'm sure that's still the case because my 90-day late is still so fresh. 

 

DECEMBER 1, 2018: Experian says my credit score went up 6 more points, to 615. On a whim, I checked Discover's Preapproval for a secured card. Miracle of miracles, I was approved! Just two weeks ago I was rejected. I'm not taking the offer right now, but how cool is that?

 

DECEMBER 27, 2018: I'm getting my remaining credit card payments set up in a payment system, drastically lowering the interest and making each monthly payment smaller (thus allowing me to build up a savings sooner). The bank was very understanding and set something up that is pretty good. They get paid, I get lower interest, it's all good.

 

JANUARY 6, 2019: My scores inched up a little bit for the New Year.

 

* I finally got TU to accept my lowered debt/settlement. My TU is now on par with EQ and EX. (All in lowish 600s.) EQ is the highest, at 629 (which I find amazing!).

 

* About a week or so ago I "wasted" a hard pull with EQ to apply to Overstock and got the dreaded 7-10 message. Oh well, I thought. It turned out the letter was just to verify my identity. I now have $250 credit with Overstock!

 

When a little over a month ago you were an absolute credit leper, being approved for an unsecured card is pretty amazing! So I guess the lesson here is, don't give up hope, things WILL get better!

 

JANUARY 15, 2019: Something inside told me I had a shot at it... so I pulled the trigger on the Walmart store card! With a 618 TU Fico 8 score, I got a $200 limit! Woo hoo! I wanted this card so bad because I go to Walmart frequently. I can get rewards and charge things that I'd be buying anyway (instead of "looking" for something to buy, like I have to do with Overstock)!

 

FEBRUARY 1, 2019: My Experian score shot up from 616 to 636! I tried the Discover prequalification page and was approved for an unsecured card! (Up until now, all I could get approval for was secured. I'm going to wait until later to get a Discover card, though.) I'm not sure what triggered the score increase; perhaps a combo of new accounts, my baddies turning 3 months old, or a gradual reduction in debt.

 

FEBRUARY 11, 2019: I changed my mind about the Discover It (Cash Back) and applied. Got a $800 credit limit which is (I think) phenomenal considering my low income and recent baddies! In a moment of foolishness, I also applied for the Platinum Visa with my credit union, Unify, but was shot down. I had a nice conversation with the person who called me to tell me about the rejection: She said basically they want to see more credit history with my new cards (at least 6 months) and my debt should be a lot lower. My low income was a problem too, but I think (though she didn't explicitly say this) that if my debt is gone, then the income becomes less of an issue. 

 

 

FICO8: Nov 20, 2018:
FICO8: July 1, 2019:
Goal for December 2019: FICO 640-700
Green Dot Secured, $200 limit  Overstock Store Card, $250 limit Walmart Store Card, $200 limit Discover IT Cash Back, $1500 limit
Navy Fed cashRewards, $1000 limit
Green Dot Secured $200, Overstock $250, Walmart $200, Discover IT Cash Back $1500, Navy Fed cashRewards $1000

Starting Score: 539
Current Score: 662
Goal Score: 760


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7 REPLIES 7
Frequent Contributor

Re: Settlement and 90-Day Late Recovery Journal (Progress reports etc)


 

That's it for now. A few days ago I checked to see if I prequalified for any cards (aiming for secured) and they were all like HELL NO. I'm sure that's still the case because my 90-day late is still so fresh. 

 

 


I saw your post in the secured card stats thread.  Have you tried a local credit union?  There are some with low requirements for a secured and you can call and ask.  Beware, some are just as stringent as banks though.  Any family in the military by chance?   Sibling, parent etc.?

 

There are a bunch of CU EX pullers out there. 
 

 


 


Rebuilding from a sudden, swift and complete credit disaster in early 2014 | Starting Scores 2017 = Very Low 400's
8-1-18 -
12-24-18 -
3-1-19 -
Message 2 of 8
Regular Contributor

Re: Settlement and 90-Day Late Recovery Journal (Progress reports etc)

Thanks, spiritcraft! I have definitely looked into credit unions. I'm thinking of trying one that is available nation-wide (like SDFCU?) because I may be (hopefully) be moving out of state in a couple of years. Unfortunately, I have no family member who has been in the military (at least no one who is currently living).

 

I was able to look at the actual report on Experian for that specific credit card account. It says:

Payment Status
Legally paid in full for less than the full balance

 

Under comments, it says:

Comments
Election of remedy - reported by subscriber

 

I hope that the score result (70+!!!) is the final consequence of this baddie and there will be no more? I don't know what may be coming up, but the info is all out there now. Also, the credit card payment calendar says that the payments were 90 days late and it's "N" (for negative). 

 

All I can do now is wait for time to pass and for the score to keep on going up?

 

Also, I got three letters today (from my three recent inquiries) from banks with explanations for their rejections: Recent baddies (late, delinquent, etc) but what they all seemed to emphasize was that my debt was too high. (Or that my income was too low for my debt.) Well, that now has been at least partially remedied! Cat Happy

 

FICO8: Nov 20, 2018:
FICO8: July 1, 2019:
Goal for December 2019: FICO 640-700
Green Dot Secured, $200 limit  Overstock Store Card, $250 limit Walmart Store Card, $200 limit Discover IT Cash Back, $1500 limit
Navy Fed cashRewards, $1000 limit
Green Dot Secured $200, Overstock $250, Walmart $200, Discover IT Cash Back $1500, Navy Fed cashRewards $1000

Starting Score: 539
Current Score: 662
Goal Score: 760


Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge   |   My credit recovery journal

Message 3 of 8
Regular Contributor

Re: Settlement and 90-Day Late Recovery Journal (Progress reports etc)

My-Experian-12-01-18.jpgWoop woop woop

My score went up another 6 points! This is so cool! I know that sometimes FICOs go up and down, up and down... but as long as I don't have any more baddies (and I definitely don't intend to!) then this is good news! Also (as I put in my first post) I tried Discover's Preapproval again on a whim (since they use Experian) and they approved me for a secured card! (I'm going to wait until later to take it, though...) They rejected me only two weeks ago.
FICO8: Nov 20, 2018:
FICO8: July 1, 2019:
Goal for December 2019: FICO 640-700
Green Dot Secured, $200 limit  Overstock Store Card, $250 limit Walmart Store Card, $200 limit Discover IT Cash Back, $1500 limit
Navy Fed cashRewards, $1000 limit
Green Dot Secured $200, Overstock $250, Walmart $200, Discover IT Cash Back $1500, Navy Fed cashRewards $1000

Starting Score: 539
Current Score: 662
Goal Score: 760


Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge   |   My credit recovery journal

Message 4 of 8
Regular Contributor

Re: Settlement and 90-Day Late Recovery Journal (Progress reports etc)

Another update. Some really good news (as I outlined in my original post). I was able to qualify for some sort of program with the bank where I pay off my remaining debt within 5 years at drastically lowered interest, lower monthly payments that will really help. I hope I can pay off this debt in full this upcoming year sometime, but until then, so much was going to pay interest... it was really dragging me down. 

FICO8: Nov 20, 2018:
FICO8: July 1, 2019:
Goal for December 2019: FICO 640-700
Green Dot Secured, $200 limit  Overstock Store Card, $250 limit Walmart Store Card, $200 limit Discover IT Cash Back, $1500 limit
Navy Fed cashRewards, $1000 limit
Green Dot Secured $200, Overstock $250, Walmart $200, Discover IT Cash Back $1500, Navy Fed cashRewards $1000

Starting Score: 539
Current Score: 662
Goal Score: 760


Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge   |   My credit recovery journal

Message 5 of 8
Regular Contributor

Re: Settlement and 90-Day Late Recovery Journal (Progress reports etc)

Yet another update. I was approved for an Overstock credit card (limit $250). It is because Comenity bank pulls Equifax (or Experian) and both those are my better scores. I'm beyond amazed that I got approved, though! Cat Happy

 

Transunion finally got "corrected" (I had to give them a nudge) so it reports my one CC account as paid up (settled for less than full balance). Before, my TU score was in the mid-500s because it insisted on listing the CC as late and the debt as still there, even though I'd paid it off and both EQ and EX reported it already.

 

Unfortunately, TU is still saying that the CC is still 90 days late. How can it be all paid up with $0 owed but simultaneously 90 days late? It was 90 days late (and that baddie is reported on both EQ and EX too), but it can't currently be 90 days late on a $0 balance. UGH. More work to be done to try to fix this.

FICO8: Nov 20, 2018:
FICO8: July 1, 2019:
Goal for December 2019: FICO 640-700
Green Dot Secured, $200 limit  Overstock Store Card, $250 limit Walmart Store Card, $200 limit Discover IT Cash Back, $1500 limit
Navy Fed cashRewards, $1000 limit
Green Dot Secured $200, Overstock $250, Walmart $200, Discover IT Cash Back $1500, Navy Fed cashRewards $1000

Starting Score: 539
Current Score: 662
Goal Score: 760


Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge   |   My credit recovery journal

Message 6 of 8

Re: Settlement and 90-Day Late Recovery Journal (Progress reports etc)


@tenaya wrote:

Yet another update. I was approved for an Overstock credit card (limit $250). It is because Comenity bank pulls Equifax (or Experian) and both those are my better scores. I'm beyond amazed that I got approved, though! Cat Happy

 

Transunion finally got "corrected" (I had to give them a nudge) so it reports my one CC account as paid up (settled for less than full balance). Before, my TU score was in the mid-500s because it insisted on listing the CC as late and the debt as still there, even though I'd paid it off and both EQ and EX reported it already.

 

Unfortunately, TU is still saying that the CC is still 90 days late. How can it be all paid up with $0 owed but simultaneously 90 days late? It was 90 days late (and that baddie is reported on both EQ and EX too), but it can't currently be 90 days late on a $0 balance. UGH. More work to be done to try to fix this.


To me, it sounds like TransUnion is actively maintaining an egregious accuracy on your credit report. If you settle it, it must update to a current/paid status. If not, and you have a paid in full letter, I would send it in with a new dispute. You have two options: you can ask them to correct it or you can ask them to delete it because they previously "verified" incorrect information. Since the account is pretty negative, I would go the deletion route if I were you. Remember, the FCRA requires them to be reporting it 100% accurately, and if not, they are violating it. If the account is still reporting errors on the other bureas, it's worth disputing with them and asking for the same thing. There are something like 50 fields of information that can be disputed for each credit item, so don't hesitate to dispute any and every single one of them, especially if you are being unfairly piunished with inaccurate negative reporting.

Discover It $2k // Target Red Card - $700 // Synchrony Home - $2,500 // Gap Card $200 // Legacy Visa $750
TU FICO: 654 (2 derogs remaining) EX FICO: 605 (6 derogs remaining) EQ FICO: 610 (6 derogs remaining)
The FCRA and FDCPA are laws, whether the creditors and debt collectors like it or not. Inaccurate information is ILLEGAL and banks ARE NOT REQUIRED to report anything (unless it's a correction to INACCURATE information).
Message 7 of 8
Regular Contributor

Re: Settlement and 90-Day Late Recovery Journal (Progress reports etc)


@RehabbingANDBlabbing wrote:

There are something like 50 fields of information that can be disputed for each credit item, so don't hesitate to dispute any and every single one of them, especially if you are being unfairly piunished with inaccurate negative reporting.

Thanks, RehabbingANDBlabbing! I asked for more clarification on this a while back and one of our knowledgeable guys (I think his name is Robert?) said the wording was legit on my TU report. I'm going to leave it be. I was approved for Walmart with that TU score, and it's not lower than EQ or EX, so whatever! I really am so grateful for everyone here and the expert advice you offer!

 

I thought I'd elaborate on my recent updates:

 

My score went up 20 points at the beginning of February AND in direct relation to that, I was approved for an unsecured Discover It card for $800!

 

This is AMAZING to me. Not even three months into rebuilding and I already have a pretty good unsecured card with good rewards and (in my opinion) a great limit! I know $800 isn't a lot, but it's pretty generous considering my recent baddies and low income. (I won't say no to CLIs, though!)

 

Also, in a moment of foolishness, I applied for an unsecured card with my credit union (Unify). Was rejected. I am upset that I wasted a perfectly good inquiry (with Experian) but the conversation I had with a Unify rep was very helpful. Basically, they want to see at least 6 months of credit usage (my "oldest" open card is a Green Dot secured with 2 months' payment history). My income is too low (under $20,000) but when I asked if anyone gets a credit card with them with an income that low, she balked at saying "no." I am reading between the lines and thinking that it's the debt I'm still paying off (closed credit cards being paid off with a very low interest rate) that's the main factor. When those debts are gone, I'm going to reapply, but I think I will call them up first to make sure that my low income is not so low as to cause another rejection. I don't want to waste another hard pull if there's no chance.

 

My conversation with the person at Unify was helpful and she seemed compassionate and kind. Before the call I was thinking, "Eh, Discover gave me a chance but Unify won't, the heck with them" but now I'm a little more favorably inclined.  

 

Everyone is different, so my experience won't be everyone else's, but I hope my story so far is encouraging. Keep on building up a good credit history, and fix what you can! You may not have to wait FOREVER to see positive results. Still, patience is the key and I definitely need to use more of it myself!

 

One thing I'm learning is, even with recent baddies there IS hope. 

FICO8: Nov 20, 2018:
FICO8: July 1, 2019:
Goal for December 2019: FICO 640-700
Green Dot Secured, $200 limit  Overstock Store Card, $250 limit Walmart Store Card, $200 limit Discover IT Cash Back, $1500 limit
Navy Fed cashRewards, $1000 limit
Green Dot Secured $200, Overstock $250, Walmart $200, Discover IT Cash Back $1500, Navy Fed cashRewards $1000

Starting Score: 539
Current Score: 662
Goal Score: 760


Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge   |   My credit recovery journal

Message 8 of 8