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A negative or wrong entry on your credit report can be one of the most adverse events that can result in a low credit score and difficulty in getting a loan when required. These entries could be delayed payment, multiple entries on overdue payments and unsettled loan accounts with the banks. In such cases, creditors may put negative remarks on your credit report which will stay for a long time and can make you appear riskier to future lenders as well. Hence, in order to help you, we have listed a few steps to remove negative or wrong entries from your credit report.
Negotiate with the bank: There are times when due to unforeseen circumstances you are not able to make payments against the outstanding loan or credit card for more than 180 days. In such cases, banks report this on your credit report as ‘written off’. This status will not only hurt your credit score but can also adversely affect your loan or credit card applications.
You can request your lender to remove the ‘written off’ status from your credit report by paying the outstanding amount. If you are not able to make the full payment, you can write to the creditor offering to pay a settlement amount. This amount is lower than the amount you owe. Once the bank agrees, wait for a written agreement before making the payment.
Note: Settlement will still reduce your credit score and reflect on your credit report but it’s better than written off status on your report.
Dispute incorrect information: There may be incorrect information errors in your credit report. There could be mistakes in your personal details such as your PAN number, name, etc. or your current balance is not updated. In such situations, you can file a dispute with the bank or credit bureau and submit relevant proofs to support it.
Ask for a goodwill deletion: You can request your current lender for a goodwill deletion. In a goodwill letter, you ask the creditor to remove a record of late payment from your credit report. You can explain the reasons for the delay in payment and request the creditor to remove this negative remark from the report. However, there’s no guarantee whether your request will be accepted or not, but it’s worth a try.
Pay off your debt: If you are not able to remove a negative entry from your credit report, the best option is to make the full payment. After making a payment, wait for it to reflect in your credit report. This will show future lenders that you are financially responsible and it will increase your chances of getting a loan or credit card in the future.
Spend as per your credit limit: If you use credit cards more often for making payments, keep a check on the amount you spend using it. Make sure you don’t spend more than 30-40% of your credit limit as it shows a lack of discipline and raises suspicion on your financial ability. Hence, it negatively impacts your credit score. While a high level of credit spends will not show as a negative entry anywhere in the credit report, it is a factor that reduces or impacts your credit score. Therefore, you must avoid spending too much on your credit card.
Take loans one at a time: Never apply for multiple loans at the same time as it shows that you are in desperate need of funds. When lenders see numerous applications within a short period, they see you as credit-hungry and it negatively affects your credit score. This is why it makes sense to apply through fintech lenders to zero in on the best loan and credit cards across multiple banks without compromising your credit score. Be very cautious and firm with your loan agents to not submit your applications to multiple banks to avoid this risk.
Check for Days Past Due (DPD): Days Past Due or DPD indicates the financial habit of the loan applicant. It indicates how many days payment on a loan account has been delayed. For every loan, a DPD is generated which is provided to the credit bureau by the bank or financial institution which grants the loan to the applicant. If the DPD section shows anything other than ‘000’ and ‘XXX’ it means that you have missed payments on your loan or credit card account. In case you default on an EMI for a month, you will have to wait for 36 months for it to go off your visible DPD records. There is no way to change values in the DPD report. Thus, you should always pay off EMIs on time without defaulting on the payment as one small mistake can cost you huge for years to come. Most of the lenders do not lend money to borrowers with DPDs in the last six months even if the borrower’s credit score is above the minimum required as per the bank’s policy. In case your loan application gets rejected on account of reported DPDs in the last six months, continue making timely payments for the next 6-8 months to reduce the impact of this negative entry on your credit score
Keep a check on delayed updates by banks: Sometimes a DPD is not the account of delayed payment by you, but because of a late cheque deposit by a bank official. In this case, keep a record of your cheque submission date to the bank as a proof to reverse any such negative entries generated in your credit report.
Managing and maintaining a healthy credit score is a continuous exercise, which requires close monitoring and proactively taking corrective actions, wherever required. Never shy away from reporting any wrong entries or working with bank representatives to remove or reduce the impact of erroneous or negative credit entries.