Paying late or running up higher-than-normal credit card balances can hurt your credit score. It takes longer to recover from a late payment, which can stay on your credit reports for up to seven years. But the damage from a high balance disappears after you’ve brought the balance down.
Other negative marks on your credit reports can come from defaulting on an account (not paying as agreed), being sent to collections, having a repossession or foreclosure, or filing for bankruptcy.
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