I'm a "newbie" in this forum, although I see some familiar faces (lol) from other boards that I've come to know since I first undertook this royal pain of life called "credit rebuilding". I've been in this process for over 3 years now, trying desperately to resolve the 60K + of debt that was incurred during my horrible 7 year marriage. This, of course, included repos, bounced checks, medical collections, and credit cards. In fact, in 1997, I don't believe I had only two positive trade lines, with over 40 negatives. Now, after reducing my negative tradelines down into the teens, and after adding my positives (over 4 years with Providian (1 x's 30 days late... my mistake), and Capital One, and a good car note that is almost paid off (slightly early @ 50 mos vs. 60 mos), I'm finding that I still cannot get over that 600 + hump, much less into "prime" territory. I've found, in discussions with rental property management companies, car dealers, banks, and other financial institutions, that I would have been better off by filing for bankruptcy. While filing for bankruptcy is certainly not at all a good thing in my mind, it is treated much better by our society and credit lenders in particular than someone who actually pays their bills, albeit late or in collections. Unfortunately, I learned the "art of negotiation" a bit late, so I've got no ammunition whatsoever, and am pretty much resigned to waiting for those negative accounts to fall off (2002-2003) before I can have a better score. Sorry to vent... but it's kinda sickening to think that I'm worse off by actually having paid those bills. A. J.