If you are a tenant and you fail to pay your rent, or you violate your lease agreement, your landlord can evict you. An eviction is a legal process that involves the landlord taking the tenant to court, and if the landlord wins the case, the tenant has to immediately move out of the occupied apartment. Unfortunately, being evicted from your apartment can seriously damage your credit history. However, there is a way to remove an eviction record and improve your credit score.
You can remove an eviction record by settling the debt with your landlord and ensuring that they remove the eviction record from your credit report. Otherwise, an eviction may remain on your credit report for seven years.
Settle the Debt
Contact the landlord to settle your unpaid debt. Try to negotiate a settlement offer or payment plan with your former landlord. Make sure that the landlord is willing to contact the credit bureaus –Experian, Equifax and TransUnion – to have them remove the eviction record from your file (after you settle your debt with the landlord).
In addition to performing a credit check, many landlords use a tenant screening company to verify an applicant’s past rental history. Make sure that your former landlord removes the eviction record from the appropriate tenant screening company, if applicable.
Ask the landlord to send you a confirmation letter outlining the terms of the agreement. The confirmation letter should highlight your total balance due, payment arrangement, due dates and a description of the fees you are being charged, such as late fees on your unpaid rent, a charge for breaking your lease and court costs associated with filing an eviction.
Pay the Balance Due
Submit each payment by the due date. It is important that you stick to the payment schedule that you agreed upon. Try to make all of your payments on time and contact the landlord if you are going to be late with a payment.
Send the landlord your final payment. Once your landlord receives your last scheduled payment, your balance will be paid in full. The landlord should send you a letter confirming that you paid your entire past due balance and that you are no longer in default of the rental agreement.
Following Up With Your Landlord
Verify that the landlord removed the eviction record from your credit report. After 30 days have passed, order a copy of your credit report from the three major credit bureaus. Look under the Public Records section to see if the eviction record appears on your credit reports. If the eviction is still listed on your credit reports, you will need to submit a formal dispute to each credit bureau to have the information removed.
Read More: How to Start My Credit History Over
- Federal Trade Commission: How to Dispute Credit Report Errors
- Annual Credit Report: Home
- Experian: How Long Does an Eviction Stay on Your Record?
- My Rental History Report: How Long Does an Eviction Stay on Your Record?
- American Landlord. "State Eviction Laws for Curable Violations." Accessed Oct. 6, 2020.
- Justia. "Eviction." Accessed Oct. 6, 2020.
- Nolo. "How to Delay an Eviction." Accessed Oct. 6, 2020.
- Experian. "How Does an Eviction Affect Your Credit Report?" Accessed Oct. 6, 2020.
- Fair Credit Reporting Act. "§ 1681c. Requirements Relating to Information Contained in Consumer Reports." Accessed Oct. 6, 2020.
Gwynita Leggington has written and published articles since 2006. Her areas of expertise include health and wellness, education, careers, personal finance and dating. Leggington's work appears on eHow.com, Answerbag.com and Essortment.com. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in communications and a Master of Arts in counseling from Prairie View A&M University.