It takes times for changes to get reported to the credit bureaus before they’re eventually reflected in our credit scores. The problem is that many consumers only choose to address their credit concerns for pressing issues, and often don’t have time to wait for the lengthy process to yield results.
This issue tends to comes up when consumers apply for a large, important loan such as a mortgage. Time is definitely of the essence, especially if the borrower is under contract to close in a specified period of time.
Enter “rapid rescore” companies. These companies were created as a result of our impatient needs, and just as you’d use an expedited passport renewal service if you had to take a sudden international trip, rapid rescore companies can rescue our credit scores in 72 hours or less.
How Does Rapid Rescoring Work?
Imagine this scenario. You receive your credit report and discover that your credit scores aren’t exactly what you were hoping for (what is a good credit score?). In fact, they’re so low that you either can’t qualify for a loan, or the interest rate will be sky-high. So you decide to turn to a rapid rescoring company to solve your credit woes, on the advice of your loan officer.
The rapid rescoring company will typically evaluate your credit history and ask you how many points are needed to get that loan approval or that lower interest rate. From there, they’ll do a diagnostic to determine which credit bureau is dragging your average down, and which needs to be rescored. Sometimes only one score will need to be rescored, though there may be cases when all three bureaus will benefit from a rapid rescore.
This happens because the credit bureaus report different information from time to time, and if only one bureau has a negative mark that the other two aren’t reporting, you could have a large range in your credit scores, causing the average to dip significantly.
That’s why it’s common to see credit score combinations like 620, 660, and 700 all on one credit report. It just goes to show how even one account can change your credit score dramatically (why credit scores are different?).
Addressing the Problem
So once the rapid rescoring company identifies the problem, they will determine what action needs to be taken with each affected bureau. It will then be up to the borrower to tackle the issues by either providing documentation or a letter of explanation to resolve any misreporting. Or the borrower may be instructed to pay off a large balance to increase the amount of available credit.
The solution will always be unique to the consumer’s situation, and will range depending on how many points need to be made up. It may be as simple as paying off a credit card balance, but could be as complicated as disputing a collection or a charge-off with the original creditor. Keep in mind that not every situation can be resolved with a rapid rescore. And there are times when a desired credit score will simply be out of reach in the short term.
Once the consumer takes action, documentation must be sent to the rapid rescore company so they can get it to the credit bureau(s) in expeditious fashion. After the credit bureau confirms the documentation, the credit score change will be made in roughly 24-72 hours.
The services of rapid rescoring companies may vary, and some could do all the work for you, while others may ask that you provide documentation and assist in the process. If you’re working with a mortgage broker, they will likely help you through the process because their commission is riding on your credit score as well.
How Much Does Rapid Rescoring Cost?
Costs of rapid rescoring seem to be in the ballpark of $30 per tradeline per bureau. So if you have one account that needs to be updated, but it needs to be reflected on all three credit bureaus, you’re looking at $90. If it’s a joint account, factor in another $90 for your spouse. Also factor in fees such as the cost of a credit report and a review fee. Watch out for exorbitant fees!
Remember, a rapid rescore isn’t necessarily a magic bullet, it’s just an expedited “bullet.” You could potentially make the same changes on your own, it would just take more time to reflect on your credit report.
Be careful who you decide to use, as an unscrupulous and untested rapid rescore company could actually make matters worse.