Revolving - Installment - Medical
By the way, NEVER settle on government insured student loans. Pay these in full, and if possible, attempt to reactivate the account or reestablish the loan as "active" under a payment plan.
Medical - While a conventional lender may require large medical collections to be paid, this at the underwriter's discretion. Typically, you can expect to pay any medical collections when using conventional financing -- unless you have an accepted dispute on the debt.
However, the FHA loan, VA, and Sub-Prime underwriting guidelines do not typically require medical collections to be paid. If you are looking to GAIN FICO, the rules still apply. Look at the date and look at the debt. If you had medical insurance, you need to get busy and find out why it wasn't paid, get the claim properly filed with the insurance company, and get it paid. If it is legitimately not covered by insurance and within the two year window, just pay it. This lost FICO could mean the difference between getting a 6% rate and getting a 9% rate.
Authorized Signer Status
If you are the authorized signer -- not borrower, joint, or cosigned -- on an account that is derogatory, you can very quickly regain lost FICO. An authorized signer is designated with an "S" next to the creditor. As an authorized signer, you are not responsible for either the balance or the derogatories on the card. By removing your name as an authorized user, you now remove the item from your credit report! Instant FICO.
The Right Way To Dispute
Once you've gone through your credit report and have settled all of your collection accounts, now it's time to clean up the rest. The speed any of this occurs is directly correspondent to the speed you address it! If you're fast enough, you will see the results in FICO score (for the accounts you've paid) within the next month's reporting cycle!
For each collection account you've paid, review your credit report and send a letter of payment in full (a semi-dispute letter) along with your proof of payment to each of the the reporting agencies (Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax) in which the collection is listed. DO NOT SEND this information to a reporting agency that does NOT report the debt. Typically, the collection agency will automatically report the payment in full the next reporting cycle (typically every 30 days). This step just ensures it gets done!
For each collection account that is a DUPLICATE of an account you have settled, send a letter of payment in full (a dispute for duplicate listing), along with your proof of payment in full to each of the reporting agencies. Again, DO NOT SEND this information to a reporting agency that does NOT report the duplicate listing. This should occur naturally, but this ensures it's addressed the first time!