We here at Credit Dr. have a tendency to look into the details. When our clients upload their responses from the bureaus, we actually read them. The reason for this is, each response makes us a bit better and gives us a more complete understanding of what is going on at those faceless entities known as 'credit reporting agencies'.
To that end, we uncover a great deal of inconsistencies, which compels us to ask more questions on behalf of our clients. This then typically results in completion of our client's goals.
Case in point: One of our clients came to us because the underwriter could not qualify a mortgage due to the fact that an account was showing open with a balance. This was effecting his debt to income ratio. It was CLEARLY REPORTING INCORRECTLY:
So, we do what we do; explain to the offending bureau that they can't possible report a balance, that is showing 'open', and that is showing 'current'. It's a contradiction. If there hasn't been a payment made since November of 2012, and there is a balance showing, it would be a charged off account. This is why the Fair Credit Reporting Act Exists; because the Bureaus are incompetent and we as consumers need leverage to get these errors corrected.
Our client returns about 40 days later with a response from Experian. Lo and Behold, Experian's response explains to our client that the account is in fact reporting accurately:
See folks, this is why we cannot make promises. Remember, there is a third party involved in this process: The Credit Bureaus and while to you and me, this is an obvious error in reporting, to them it's reporting correctly. Which means, they didn't even look at the file. They don't care this client's home purchase is hinging on their mistake. Nope, all is well here Mr. Consumer, the account is reporting a - ok...
So, we sent a letter back to them, with this response and our explanation. We also reminded them that there would be repercussions should be ignore our request again.
Our client then received this response:
Somehow, in a matter of 3 days, they looked at the tradeline again and fixed it. And now, the credit report is reporting accurately. It only took one round of being very aggressive.
Ed-Jack Dvorak is National Affiliate Liaison at Credit Dr., a national credit restoration company. He works with clients and creditors to improve credit profiles.