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How to Get Your Free Credit Report

by Peter Andrew


How to Get Your

Free Credit Report

Recent laws

have mandated that every consumer is entitled to a free yearly

check of his or her credit reports. Seeing your credit report

not only helps you understand how potential lenders will judge

your credit-worthiness; it also gives you the chance to spot

any mistakes that could be falsely hurting your credit score.

Also, it is not unheard of for old, paid debts to show up as

unpaid on your credit reports -- or to find that accounts you

never even opened have somehow been associated with you.

In most cases, though, seeing your credit report is simply a

great way to get an overall picture of how much credit you have

available to you and how you've been using it.

To

get your yearly free credit reports from the three major credit

reporting agencies -- Equifax, Experian and TransUnion -- go

to AnnualCreditReport.com.

This is the official site to get your free credit report --

other sites may offer free reports, but they do so generally

as a lead-in to selling you other credit products. You are entitled

to your free credit report once every 12 months.

Your

free credit report shows your open credit accounts, any payment

irregularities and other credit information. What it does NOT

do is show you your credit score, or the actual number many

lenders use in deciding whether to give you credit and at what

interest rate. Credit scores have to be purchased and generally

cost around $15.

 

Published 12/20/05 (Modified 05/07/12)


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