Consumers who make late credit payments have no idea how badly their credit scores can be affected or how long it takes to repair the damage. According to Nerdwallet.com, a late payment of 30 days or more can knock as many as 100 points off your credit score and stay on your credit report for up to seven and a half years.
FICO scores, the credit-scoring system used by the Fair Isaac Corporation, help banks and other lenders determine a borrower’s creditworthiness. Your scores can change with every new report from a creditor, but nothing impacts credit scores like a missed payment. Your payment history accounts for 35 percent of your FICO score, advises credit bureau Experian.com. Other factors include the amounts owed (30%) credit history length (15%), types of credit (10%) and new credit (10%.)
If you’re late making a payment on an account, don’t despair. Equifax.com, another credit bureau, explains that the payment due date on your statement or bill is the last day you can pay on your account without incurring late fees. Lenders routinely report accounts to credit bureaus at least 30 days after the payment due date, and they often don’t report late payments until they’re 60 days past due.
Even if your payment is late, go ahead and make it. If you can pay the amount due in full, some lenders won’t report the late payment. You’ll have to pay whatever late fees are levied, but your credit score will remain intact.