The credit bureaus have gotten pretty good about instantaneously obtaining and promptly reporting your personal financial information. The credit bureaus are big, savvy, and flush with cash. But are all of the creditors you owe listed on your credit report? Maybe not.
These are some of the most common types of bills and creditors that typically are not listed on your credit report.
If you have just opened an account, the creditor might not have yet reported the account to the credit bureaus. This is especially true for non-financial creditors like hospitals and other types of medical services providers, like LabCorp. Credit bureaus are constantly competing with one another to obtain your information more quickly. Credit bureaus used to report on a three-month reporting cycle, but no longer. Today credit bureaus typically report new creditors, especially institutional investors, within a matter of days or even hours.
Creditors that just obtained your debt
If one of your creditors decides to sell your debt, there is nothing you can do about it. Debt purchasers buy debt for pennies on the dollar, then attempt to collect the full amount. If a debt was recently transferred, you may see “Charged off” or “Transferred” on your credit report from the previous creditor. If if the new creditor just obtained your debt, they may not report it right away. Once they do report it, it will likely be itemized as a “Factoring” or “Repurchased” account.
Small business creditors
Many types of small businesses do not routinely report outstanding invoices to credit bureaus. Small business owners occasionally take the time and effort to report debts only to send a signal prior to filing a lawsuit. Ignoring this signal can cost you a lot of money. But when reviewing your credit report, do not forget that many small businesses do not report debts. That doesn’t mean that the debt is not still collectible. If a small business goes through the trouble to report a debt to the credit bureaus, contact the creditor and make payment arrangements. Do not sit back and wait to be sued on the debt.
Shady internet lenders
Internet money lenders, often based in foreign countries, typically do not report debts to credit bureaus. Yet sometimes they do report. Signature loans obtained over the internet are shady. Stay away from these types of loans, unless you want to change your cell phone number and email address. Even if you pay off the debt in full, you have no guarantee that the creditor will correctly report the debt as paid.
Friends and family members
Friends and family members do not report promissory notes or personal loans to credit bureaus. Believe it or not, there are exceptions to this rule. But if you are attempting to determine exactly who it is you owe, do not forget to include personal loans from friends or family.