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Hi Fools,

I just paid off my last credit card (first time in 9 years ... no CC debt. YEA!!!!) and then ordered my credit reports.

Now I have a couple of quick questions. I plan to buy a house next summer (July/August 1999) and want to clean up my credit reports. Also, I have a full time job and realistically will be able to easily afford the mortgage and taxes for the range of houses I'm interested in.

First, I found a *ton* (3 pages worth) of those "pre-screening" checks on my reports. What affect do they have?

Second, "Dings": I had a bad spell a few years ago and in a very short period got a bunch of 30 day late CC dings (about 5 at once or right next to each other, but no 60 or 90 day dings, at all, ever). These were a one time thing. How do they affect my credit rating?

Also, I have a few other unexpected 30 recent day dings on my report that I really can't figure out what to do about. One is from my car lease which is supposed to be on an automatic payment, but they reported me (within last 12 mos.) on the month just before the automatic payments were started (it could be an error, but I'm really think that the paperwork didn't get processed in time for the cut over).

One was a legitimate late ding and fairly recent too (within last 12 mos.), but I called the CC company and they said they wouldn't report it if I mailed the check when I told them I would (even though it would be late). I did, but it got reported anyways. Arrgh!

So, what can I do to clean it up, and how do late dings affect my credit rating? Thanks in advance for your feedback.

- ChicagoBob
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