Unsurprisingly, a foreclosure can cause considerable damage to a credit report. What’s more, it’s damage that lingers. It’s common for foreclosures to remain on someone’s credit report for seven years. During that time, the person with the foreclosure may find it difficult to receive credit, or they receive credit, but it’s limited in the total amount allowed and can be high-interest rates. It can also affect their ability to get a new mortgage or be approved for rental housing. In some cases, it may affect their ability to get a new job or promotion. But there are potentially ways to lessen the impact.

When Can I Get a Foreclosure Removed From My Credit Report?

Usually, a foreclosure will automatically be removed from a credit report seven years from the date of the first missed payment. This is known as the date of first delinquency, or DoFD. Once seven years have elapsed from the Do FD, the foreclosure should disappear without any effort on the mortgagor’s behalf. Sometimes, however, incorrect information in the credit report will stall that, and the mortgagor will need to contact the credit bureau to have it removed.

Is There Any Way to Remove a Foreclosure From My Credit Report Sooner Than Seven Years?

In most cases, the answer is no. Seven years is the required time for credit reports. But there are a few exceptions that apply in rare cases.

  • Lack of documentation. If the credit report can’t find the supporting documentation regarding the foreclosure, you can request it be removed from the report.
  • Lender goes out of business. If you know the lender has gone out of business, it’s worth pursuing. It will be up to you to provide the documentation proving the lender no longer exists as a business entity, as the credit agencies won’t search for this independently.
  • Lender voluntarily dismisses the foreclosure case. In Illinois, it’s possible to do a “deed in lieu of foreclosure,” in which the mortgagor voluntarily gives the home back to the lender. If the lender accepts, they release the mortgagor from the loan and stop the foreclosure. The mortgagor can then request to have the foreclosure removed from their credit report.

How Can I Rebuild My Credit Score After a Foreclosure?

While waiting for a foreclosure to be removed, there are things you can do to begin rebuilding your credit score. You don’t need to wait seven years.

Create or modify your personal budget. Something went wrong along the way with your finances. Figure out what that is and determine how to create a budget that will allow you to live within your means.

Pay your bills on time. A budget will help you do that.

Try a secured credit card. This is a credit card that requires a deposit against future spending.

Let Us Advise You


If you or someone you know is facing foreclosure, call us at 708-575-1500 to work with one of our experienced foreclosure attorneys.