It makes sense for your credit report to contain old credit account information or even loans you settled years ago. But, sometimes, you might be surprised to find old or inaccurate addresses. Don’t worry – most people often find themselves in this situation. So, why do old addresses appear on credit reports?
Your creditors usually report your addresses and other credit information to credit bureaus that update your credit report. This means your credit report may include past or present addresses listed on accounts in your name, even if you don’t live there anymore. And anytime you change your address with a credit card provider, the new address can be included in your report.
However, an old or new address that you’re unfamiliar with in your credit report is an issue of concern because it might indicate fraud. If that’s the case, you need to report the inaccurate information immediately by filing a dispute. Here’s everything you need to know about removing and updating old addresses on credit reports.
How Can You Remove Old Addresses from A Credit Report?
If you wish to remove old addresses from your credit report, contact the credit report agency handling your data to see which creditor reported it. Once you have found the creditor, send them a letter via email or snail mail. Follow up to ensure the letter got received.
Next, prove that you’re not associated with the old address anymore. This way, the creditor can update your address with credit reporting agencies when they update your account. There are several ways you can prove your current residence. Ask the creditor which method they prefer.
Alternatively, you can fill out a dispute form with the credit bureau. Then, head to the credit reporting agency’s official website, fill out the form and follow up as requested. If you don’t hear from either your credit company or credit bureau, follow up.
Does Removing Old Addresses Impact Your Credit?
There’s more to credit reports than credit and loan information. Your credit report contains personal identifying information (PII) such as your name, aliases, birthday, previous employers and current addresses that credit bureaus use to verify your identity and match you to your credit history. The same information helps credit reporting agencies differentiate your credit history from other customers who may share your name.
The three major credit bureaus – Experian®, TransUnion®, and Equifax® – don’t use PII like old addresses to calculate your credit score. To calculate your score, most scoring models factor in debt-related details, such as types of accounts, recent credit applications, payment history and credit history. So long as the included PII is accurate and updated, you’re good to go.
In most cases, the addresses appearing in your credit report are those reported by your previous and current creditors. Chances are addresses you used in the past can reflect in your credit report. You don’t necessarily have to remove or dispute them because they are old. Furthermore, they don’t negatively impact your credit score unless they pop up out of nowhere. If that’s the case, you need to be concerned because it may indicate fraud or possible identity theft.
Why Is It Important to Update and Remove Old Addresses from Credit Reports?
It’s not important to update your current address in your credit report. Provided that your creditor has your accurate billing address, you can receive your billing statement. Also, they can report your present address to credit bureaus, so that they can update your credit report.
The same applies to removing old addresses. These addresses don’t negatively impact your credit score, meaning there’s no need to dispute them. Moreover, they exist on your list for a reason: creditors and credit reporting agencies might use them for verification. Nevertheless, if the old address appeared from nowhere, it’s wise to follow up and learn why the creditor reported it.
You can remove an old or inaccurate address by writing a letter to your creditor or filling out a dispute form with a credit reporting agency. In addition, don’t forget to monitor your credit report for any changes or fraudulent activities to avoid falling victim to identity theft.
It’s always important to seek the help of a credit monitoring service. With such service, you can enjoy continuous monitoring of your credit scores and reports and identity theft protection.