I bet no one is ever happy to learn that they have some letters from collection agencies asking for payment as a result of an unpaid debt. There's no way you'd smile either if you look into your credit report to discover that you have one or several collection accounts on your file. But before you start thinking whether to pay the collector or delete this type of negative information, you should ask yourself first if you're actually responsible for it.
Though it is a good idea if you want to negotiate with the collector, but it is wiser to verify first if the account actually belongs to you as there is a possibility it is a mistaken account when one considers the fact that around 80percent of reports contain errors.
If you discover that it is mistaken information, then you should write to the credit bureau that has placed it on their version of your file about this error. The Fair Credit Reporting Act gives you advantage in this regard such that the bureau is required to delete the information you're disputing whether it's mistaken or not if it (the bureau) fails to complete its investigation after 30days of receiving your dispute letter.
In another situation, you are also allowed to delete a collection that has exceeded its time-span on your file if the information furnisher or the bureau fails to do so. Removing negative information such as this will earn you additional points on your credit score. But you must understand that you need to be persistent and patient at the same time.
You can also negotiate with a collector about paying a fraction of the amount owed if you know their request is legal. Offering to pay anything around 50percent of the original debt amount should work in your favor. But you should negotiate to have the collection on your file replaced with a statement that shows it is settled.
Using either self-help or a repair agency method for fixing your file should work towards cleaning your file.