The 5 Most Common Errors on Credit Reports

Written by Alex Bach

Errors on your credit report can have costly effects that could potentially take years to correct.  That’s why it’s important to monitor your scores and be on the look out for any errors that might arise.   Here are some of the most common errors that occur in credit reports.

Errors can be costly, find out how bad the damage can be and use that as an incentive to keep an eye on your credit score.

Top 5 Credit Report Errors:

Incorrect Information

Incorrect information is the number one cause of errors on credit reports.  This can be as simple as having the wrong line of credit written: i.e. a generic line of credit instead of a home-equity line of credit. Inaccurately reported missed payments can be a frequent problem, especially if you’re paying your bills by snail mail and they arrive after the due date but are post-marked prior; this can usually be cleared up by placing a call to the company.

Information Mix-up

Like incorrect information, mixed or accidental information is another big reason for credit errors. One of the biggest instances of information mix-ups occurs with people who have similar names: For example, Dave Johnson of Flint, Michigan’s information coming up in Dave Johnson of New Haven, Connecticut’s credit report.  These mix-ups can be some of the more hidden and pernicious errors in your file–and can sometimes signal an identity theft.

Outdated Information

Anything from the number of dependents you claim to your work history to even your criminal history might still be lingering on your account causing problems.  Bad debts are set to be removed after seven years but sometimes they don’t get removed. One of the biggest pieces of outdated information many people forget about is their marital information, that is, still having accounts that are linked to that ex-wife or ex-husband.

Identity Fraud

Taking bits and pieces of the first two categories but adding a very deliberate edge to it, identity fraud is a very real and very disastrous problem in our current world.  As there are many parties involved (banks, credit cards, police), this can take a lot of time to fix.

Duplicate Accounts/Entries

A frequent but simple error to fix in your credit report. Go through your accounts and make sure all of the accounts are correct and that the entries haven’t been duplicated (like a missed payment for the month of October listed twice by the same credit card company).