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How long does it take to establish a good credit score?

By , CardRatings contributor
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Question: How long does it take to establish a good credit score?

Answer: Your question is rather loaded as there are so many variables associated with the answer. To start off with, you need to define what a good credit score is. Understand that any negative comment will remain on your credit report for usually 7.5 years. Some issues can remain longer, such as bankruptcy.

If you have a poor credit history, subsequent negative comments are like adding ice to an already cold bucket of water, whereas a creditor reporting good credit history is like adding a warm stone. How long will it take to warm up the water? That depends on just how cold the water was to start, how many warm stones get added, and whether any more ice water is added.

Over 33 percent of your credit score is based upon payment history, and you can make the most significant improvement to your score by making payments on time. But that means there are still additional areas, such as type of credit you have now and how long you've had credit, which can also influence your score.

If you are just starting out, then you can begin to build a fair-to-good credit score within a matter of a year and a half or two if you go about it the right way.  However, it will take some time to get beyond that point because the length of your credit history plays a big role in your overall credit score.  For more information, check out How is a Credit Score Calculated and How Can I Improve My Credit Score?

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