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Can I delete a negative Schufa entry to improve my score?

Do you have negative Schufa entries and want to know whether you can get them deleted? We’ll tell you how you can find out your score and what you can do about a negative rating.

4 min read

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Whether you were moving house or taking out a loan, you’ve most likely heard about Schufa. If you’ve always paid your bills on time, you’ll likely have a good Schufa score and can relax. But other factors, like opening several bank accounts at once, can affect your score. We’ll show you how to find out what your score is, what you can do about negative ratings, and whether you can get Schufa entries deleted.


How do I find out my Schufa score—and what do the different numbers mean?

 You can request your Schufa score directly from the Schufa website. To help you interpret your score and other ratings from Schufa correctly, we’ll explain the difference between your base score and the Schufa orientation score.


The base score

Schufa scores generally indicate how likely you are to fail to meet your payment obligations in the future. The base score is a non-industry-specific assessment of your creditworthiness. It’s shown when you request a copy of your personal data (in accordance with Article 15 GDPR), for example. It gives your repayment probability as a percentage—i.e. an estimate of how likely you are to make the contractually agreed payments. This percentage is updated every quarter, with a score of 100 representing perfect credit.


The Schufa orientation score

 In addition to the base score, Schufa also provides an orientation score, which shows how good your credit rating is. It’s calculated when a Schufa credit check is performed.

 This score is always between 100 and 600, with 100. The lower the number, the more likely it is that you will meet your payment obligations, so a score of 100 represents the lowest risk of you being unable to pay. A score of 600 means that you’re deemed to be the highest risk. The level of risk you pose depends on how often those in your comparison group—i.e. people similar to you based on your data—have missed payments in the past.

 Here’s a more detailed explanation of what the different numbers mean:

  • 100-190: There’s no record of you failing to make payments, so you’re at low risk of defaulting on your payments.
  • 200-299: While there’s still no record of you missing payments, there's a slightly higher risk of payment default.
  • 300-499: There’s no record of you missing payments, but the risk of you defaulting on payments is deemed to be much higher based on your data.
  • 500: There’s verified information about you failing to make payments.
  • 600: Here, there’s confirmed information from public debtor registers, like bankruptcy proceedings being filed.

The Schufa orientation score is calculated from the weighted average of your Schufa industry scores. Schufa has developed different scoring models for different industries. This is because the likelihood of you keeping up with payments could be different when you buy a car compared to when you make a mail-order purchase. The banking score, or the mail-order/e-commerce score, could be relevant in this case. Scores range from 9,999 (rating level A, the lowest risk of defaulting on payments) to 0 (rating level P, the highest risk of defaulting on payments).


Can I delete a Schufa entry?

If your overdraft request was rejected, or if you can’t get the phone contract you want, it could well be that you have negative entries in your Schufa. First of all, you should request your free Schufa report and check the data stored there. If you find anything that’s incorrect, you’re entitled to have the information corrected. While the information is being checked, Schufa has to block the entries concerned. So, you can’t actually delete negative Schufa entries, but you can get them corrected. For correct entries, these will be deleted automatically three years after your settlement. 

What can you do in the long term to improve your credit score? You could use your overdraft less often and make sure that your outgoings don’t exceed your monthly income. You could also think about changing some of your financial habits.


Banking with N26

With N26, you can say goodbye to messy paperwork, and skip the line at the bank branch! In addition to our free current account and premium accounts, you also have the option of our N26 Flex bank account—a bank account for anyone who doesn’t meet the minimum requirements for a current account in Germany due to their credit score. Enjoy the benefits of digital banking and choose an account that fits your lifestyle.

Frequently asked questions

What’s a good Schufa score?

A Schufa score of 100 represents perfect credit. For the Schufa orientation score, a good score is between 100 and 199. This means there’s no record of you failing to make payments, so you’re at low risk of defaulting on your payments.

When are Schufa entries deleted?

If you have a negative entry because you didn’t pay a bill, or a court payment order was obtained, these entries will usually be deleted automatically three years after you’ve settled the debt. In the case of loans and guarantees, the data will be stored at least until the end of the term. Entries in the register of debtors are also deleted after three years—and Schufa must then delete its note on the entry in the register.

How quickly can I lower my Schufa score?

This depends on your individual Schufa score and the age of the entries. However, for future borrowing, it could help if you’ve previously paid off your loan early and there’s a record of this—your bank is required to notify Schufa.

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