How Long Do Negative Items Stay on My Credit Report?

How Long Do Negative Items Stay on My Credit Report?A credit report is a lot like a human body – it grows and becomes strong over time.

When something serious happens, it can damage your rating, but eventually, it will heal.

However, the length of the ‘healing’ process may take some time depending on the damage.

Credit Report Information

Negative data in your credit report can stay for as long as 7 years. Bankruptcy information is reflected for 10 years. According to FICO (Fair Isaac Corporation) an individual with a score of 680 who declared bankruptcy can expect it to fall around 130 to 150 points.

If there is no new negative data during that time, the credit report can be expected to get back to 680 in about 5 years. This means that if you start practicing ‘healthy credit habits’, such as paying your mortgage on-time and avoiding debts, your score will slowly heal.

Credit Card Late Payments

When you miss a payment, the data can stay on your report for 7 years. For instance, you missed a credit card payment a few years back…it will be 7 years after the late payment incident before the delinquency will be removed from your account’s history.


When a creditor decided to give up trying to collect after several months of missed payments they designate it as a ‘charge-off’. This includes balances from your credit card or mortgages. The information can remain on your account for 7 years from the date it was tagged as a ‘charge off’.

It is important to understand that when your account is categorized as a ‘charge off’ it does not mean you are off the hook. Your creditor will likely sell your charged-off debt to a collection agency.


Foreclosure data can stay on your report for 7 years from the date of filing. The same goes for a short sale, which will most likely be shown as a charge-off or settled for less than the full amount.


Soft inquiries will be shown on your report but will not be considered in determining your credit score.

Account review by your credit card company, a personal request of your own report, or promotional inquiry from companies who consider you as a candidate of certain offers, are samples of this type.

Hard inquiries, on the other hand, can negatively affect your report. When you apply for a new credit card, the lender will evaluate your application. This will slightly affect your credit score but only for a short time.

Hard inquiries will stay on your report for 2 years but will only affect your credit score for 1 year.

Collection Accounts

Information on your collection account can stay on your report for 7 years plus 180 days from the date of payment problems.

For example, you have an inconsistent payment record on your bill, missing it in February but catching it up the following month. You missed it again in April and May so the company then sent your bill to a debt collector. This can remain on your report for 7 years plus 180 days from the date of your due date in April.

Whether you eventually pay the amount or not, it will stay on your report for the entire duration. You can request to have the collection amount removed if you pay off the debt, but this can be difficult to obtain, and you should get the agreement in writing.


It is important to closely check your credit report. If you notice a debt or collection account incorrectly reported, you should file for a dispute, which can improve your credit score.

Depending on the type of negative items and how much time has passed, the Jimmy Vercellino Team may be able to help you get a home loan despite those negative reports. To learn more, give our office a call.


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