Imagine the following scenario…you budget and work hard to pay off your credit card debt because you understand that doing so will save you money and will likely help to improve your credit scores. After months of dedication you finally reach your goal of zero credit card debt. However, when you check your credit reports the next day you are surprised to learn that your credit card account still shows an outstanding balance. Is this a mistake? Why is your new zero balance not showing up on your credit reports?
There are many things that take place in the world of credit that can be confusing to consumers. The fact that your credit card balances do not update on your credit reports in real time ranks high on the list. I mean, we ARE in 2019! Believe it or not, the credit card balance reflected on your credit reports is only updated once a month.
When Does Your Credit Card Balance Update on Your Credit Report?
Once a month your credit card issuer will send the credit bureaus information about your account including your current credit limit, your outstanding balance, and payment status (on-time, 30 days late, 60 days late, etc.). Even if you pay your credit card balance in full each month, as you should certainly aim to do, an outstanding credit card balance may still appear on your credit reports.
The credit card balance which shows up on your credit reports is going to be the balance which is reflected on your most recent account statement. The balance reported will not include any payments or charges made after your statement for the month is generated. Therefore, if you want your credit reports to reflect a zero balance then you will need to make sure that you are paying off your account balance at the correct time during the month.
How to Ensure a Zero Balance Is On Your Credit Reports
Since the credit card balances which show up on your credit reports can potentially have a big influence on your credit scores, it is important to figure out how to ensure that a zero balance is reported to the credit bureaus. In order to achieve this goal you will need to create the habit of paying off your credit card balances before your credit card bill is ever sent to you.
Paying off your credit card balance by the due date can help you to save money on interest and maintain a positive payment history on the account. However, paying by the due date will not ensure that a zero balance shows up on your credit reports. If you want to be sure that a $0 credit card balance shows up on your credit reports then you will need to find out the statement closing date on your account.
The final day of your credit card account’s billing cycle is known as your statement closing date. Each month when your credit card billing cycle comes to an end a statement is generated and sent to you either electronically or via the mail. A snapshot of your account information from the day of your statement closing date will be sent to the credit bureaus as well.
Finding out your statement closing date is easy. You simply need to check your statement or give your card issuer a call. As long as you pay of your balance in full prior to your statement closing date then the balance which is reported to the credit bureaus for the month will be $0. We call it an ethical credit score hack.
-By John Ulzheimer
Better Day Consultanting, The fastest growing credit repair firm in the U.S. Call now: 833-522-0200 www.betterdayconsulting.com