I just got another credit report from a credit monitoring service. This service comes free for the first 30 days when I go through my HSBC credit card and then it runs $9.95 a month. I am going to cancel at the end of the trial period because by then it will be time to get my second free credit report from www.annualcreditreport.com.

The credit monitoring service gives you updates on what happens to your credit score if anything happens to the credit report while the service is active. I think this is very helpful because it gives you an idea of how much your score will go up or down depending on different events.

The one thing I found out when I just got this report is that Equifax is still showing me as having a late payment on the loan for the Colt. Just to clarify, I never did have a late payment. The loan was refinanced and the payment date was moved from the 5th to the 7th. I paid the loan on the 3rd and got a printed receipt from the teller…..but for some reason it is showing up that month as late. I have no idea why because the actual payment day (the 3rd) is way before the due dates of either the 5th or the 7th of the month.

The person at the bank explained it to me this way: When the loan got refinanced it appears as another loan and the payment went to the refinanced amount. Well this does not make sense to me because the refinanced loan has the same number as the original loan. It is not like the bank is showing loan #212 and #213. All they have is loan # 212.

So the money got reported to the credit bureau as loan 212(original) is late but 212 (refinanced) is up to date. Silly huh?

I saw this on my earlier credit report and reported it to the bank who said they got it fixed. So Transunion and Experian have it straight but Equifax still has the stupid thing showing as late.

I guess that would explain (partly) why my Experian score is now at 694 which is a massive drop from what it used to be. This is the lowest score out of the three so that is why I am using it. This is just a ‘fair’ score in the ranking system and it is very depressing. I have been working so hard to pay everything on time and pay more than the minimum and this is what I get? My ranking is just better than 30% of the rest of the population.

Not good enough.

I am working now in improving my score and I need to get my points back up as quickly as possible. This means no more applying for new cards which I probably would not get any way since my score is so bad. It also means being more aggressive with paying off that debt so that I will have lower balance to limit ratios so that my score will improve.

Depending on how this credit monitoring thing works out I may decide to keep it after the trial period so that I can actively manage the direction my credit score moves in.

UPDATE: I originally posted this as saying that Experian had my information wrong but the error is actually on Equifax. It has already been corrected by Experian.