This common question of how long debt information stay on your credit report is a common question. I’m here to dispel some rumors and report the facts.
The truth is that even if you pay off all of your credits, your debt information will remain on your credit report. Future lenders will still be able to see it before they consider loaning you any money. Depending on the nature of the debt, these postings can remain on your report from a period of 7 years to 15 years from the day they were first posted.
So does this mean that you shouldn’t pay off your debts? Absolutely not. Paying off your debts will help improve your credit score but you will only reach the optimum level after all of the debt information on your report has fully expired. When you have paid an old debt it will show up as “paid” in your account, much better than an outstanding debt.
The time they remain on your report depends on the kind of debt that was accrued. The following is a list of common debt items along with their expiration dates.
- Late payments and collections – 7 years
- Home foreclosures – 7 years
- Lawsuits and judgments against you – 7 years
- Charge offs – 7 years plus 180 days from the date of delinquency
- Student loan default – 7 years
- Bankrupts – 10 years
- Paid tax liens -7 years
- Unpaid tax liens – 15 years