How long do missed payment rates stay on my credit report?

Missing a payment for something that we owe can be a little nerve-wracking, especially when you become aware that missed payments for things like credit cards stay on your credit file for a time.

In this guide, we’ll dive into the ins and outs of missed payments and investigate how they can negatively impact your credit score. We’ll also offer some top tips for making timely repayments, to help ensure you don’t fall into financial trouble. So, if you’re wondering about missed payments and how to minimise them, let’s dive into it.

The impact of missed payments on your credit score

Your credit score is reflective of your creditworthiness, or in other words, how reliable you are with credit. And, late or missed payments (on things such as loans) can harm your credit score.

While you should strive to make prompt, timely repayments, sometimes things go wrong. For instance, if an emergency crops up (such as urgent, unavoidable car repairs) you might struggle to meet a deadline.

A failure to pay on time can damage your score, making it harder for you to get approved for credit in the future. This is because a weak score signals to lenders that you may be struggling to effectively manage your finances.

While a late payment of any kind will have an impact, the effects do differ in severity. For instance, a 30-day late repayment may have less of an impact than a 90-day one (assuming the debt is equal).

It’s also important to mention that your credit score is based on multiple different factors. So, if you have an otherwise exceptional credit history, a single late payment might not be a deal breaker. However, it depends on the credit you’re applying for as well as the lending criteria.

Exactly how long do late payments stay on your credit report?

Late payments can remain on your credit report for six years. However, it’s important to note that they will have less of an impact as time goes on.

For instance, lenders usually focus on your most recent credit history first, meaning if you make an application three years after a previous missed payment, it may not ruin your chances of being accepted.

Missed payments have the biggest impact when they are initially reported. So, if you keep up with your future scheduled payments, your credit score should bounce back.

Removing a late payment from your credit report

Generally, if you act fast and make the payment within 30 days of the deadline, it will not be recorded on your credit report.

Once it’s reported, you cannot remove a late payment. This is unless the late payment has been recorded inaccurately. So, it’s important to regularly check your credit report to spot any errors which may be damaging your score.

If you’re wondering how a credit check work, you can get a free check from one of the three main credit reference agencies:

  • Experian

  • Equifax

  • TransUnion

If you notice any inaccurate information on your report, make sure to dispute it as soon as possible. If you remain aware, you can make sure any inaccuracies can be amended accordingly.

The importance of making timely payments

For a healthy credit score, you must ensure all payments (on things such as loans, bills, and mortgages) are made on time. Some companies may also charge fees for late or missed payments. These can quickly add up, harming your finances further, so it’s important to pay without delay.

If you’re worried, you’re going to miss a deadline, contact your creditor immediately. By acting before you miss the deadline, you may be able to work out alternate repayment arrangements.

How to ensure your payments are made on time

Below we’ve come up with some top tips for ensuring you make prompt, timely payments:

1. Set up a direct debit

Setting up a direct debit will ensure your money leaves your account automatically. This way, you won’t have to worry about remembering to make the payments, and you’ll have all-important peace of mind.

You could set your direct debit up to come out on payday to ensure you have adequate funds. Also, you could start a spreadsheet to get super organised or set up reminders on your mobile so you’re aware of which payments are coming out and when.

2. Ensure there’s adequate money in your account

Tying in with the above point, you’ll need to ensure there’s enough money in your account to cover the payments. Whether you set up a single direct debit payment or a series of them, the necessary funds will need to be available.

3. Practice effective monthly budgeting

With effective monthly budgeting, you’ll be able to make sure you’re able to comfortably make your repayments. And it will ensure you don’t accidentally spend your money elsewhere.

If you’re looking for help with budgeting your money, we’ve got an insightful guide on effective monthly budgeting tips. In there, you’ll find tips on everything from downloading handy budgeting apps to assessing your spending goals and setting aside extra funds for unexpected costs.

How long does it take for a credit score to go up?

Boosting your credit score won’t happen overnight, and you’ll have to put in the hard work and be patient. But the benefits will be worth it in the end, as a good credit score is key to establishing a financially healthy future.

So, while missed payments can stay on your credit file for up to six years, there are things you can do to both avoid future missed payments and boost your score in the meantime.

The negative effects of late payments are long-lasting, but they are not permanent. So, it’s more than possible to secure healthier finances.

For more top tips and insights, why not head over to the Moneyboat blog? There you’ll find blogs on everything from building budgetsto credit repair services.

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Representative Example: Borrow £400 for 4 months, 4 monthly repayments of £149.37. Total repayment £597.48, interest rate p.a. (fixed) 255.5%. Representative APR 939.5%.Compare Moneyboat loans.

Warning: Late repayments can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to