You Really Helped Me Boost My Credit Score. I’m Forever Grateful. – Ericka

“Dear Steve,

I have followed your advice before and glad to see a great change in my credit report. I used to have a horrible score of 305, which is the low of the low. When I lost my job in 2007 and my high income, I defaulted on 2 of my credit cards and 2 cell phone companies. I moved to a different state, which caused all 4 of those companies to take legal notice in my previous state, leaving me with 4 public records on my credit report. I saw the original companies who had sent me to the 4 credit collectors, be removed from my credit report. I opened up a secured credit card with Capital One and started to rebuild the damage.

Currently, I have a FICO score of 692, which I’m extremely happy about. I have 5 years of good credit history now and have never been late on any of my payments. I keep my secured card at a balance to limit ratio of 32% every month (my limit is $200), but I wanted to know can my score continue to go up, even with the public records on my report? Should I think about signing up for another secured card? Will the public records ever be looked passed? I have 5.5 years until I can ask for the records to be removed, so I’m confused at what’s my next step.

By the way, this website has helped me tremendously, and I’m forever grateful!


Dear Ericka,

Sounds to me like you are doing everything right here. The more time that passes from those old negative records, the less they matter. They should be automatically removed after 7.5 years after they were first reported negatively. Typically they are remove after seven years.

I’d suggest you get a second secured card and keep it at no more than 30% of the limit. Quite simply you need more good and recent credit to be added. When you shop for a card make sure the secured card reports to the credit bureau.

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After you get the second card it’s time to see if Capital One will increase your limit so you are showing some bigger limits you are using responsibly.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.


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Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

Steve Rhode

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