Many people wonder how often they should check their credit report and the answer they receive is similar to the advice from their doctors about getting a physical: each must be done once a year. However, checking your credit report once a year may not be enough. In fact, it may only be good advice for someone who has a good credit score and who doesnat open many new accounts every year. In the worldas current economic state, many people do not fit into this category and therefore it is important to know and understand the instances in which credit reports ought to be checked.
You may check your credit card and bank statements thoroughly every month, but in these times, that may not be enough to detect identity theft. When a thief opens a brand new account in your name, it won’t show up on your credit card bill, but you will see it on a credit report, since credit reports show new accounts that have been opened.
Identity fraud has become a huge problem as of late and the theft extends beyond stealing your money to stealing your credit by opening accounts in your name and running up the balances. Worst of all, you will be stuck with their massive credit card debt. When the collectors come calling at your door, you know you have been defrauded too late.
If you have made bad credit decisions in the past and you would like to resolve them, or, if you have excellent credit and would like to keep your score up, being aware of the information on your credit report is a good place to start. Checking your credit report allows you to know what creditors have reported about you, and it contains information about accounts you have had or currently have. Knowing this information is vital to improving or keeping your credit score.
Applying for a loan is another situation where you need to know what is on your credit report. You will want to know what reason a creditor may have for denying you a loan. If you are denied for a loan, it could be something as small as a twenty dollar debt from four years ago. If you are rejected for a loan, you are entitled to pull a free credit report, which you should look over to ensure that all information is correct.
Credit reporting bureaus are made up of people, and where there are humans, there is the possibility for human error, even on your credit report. You have the legal right to challenge any errors that you may find on your report. If you do make a challenge, credit agencies are required by law to investigate to make sure the information is correct.
You have the right to know what your credit report says about you. Whether you are looking into getting a loan, or just trying to make sure your identity has not been stolen, it is important to keep aware of what information is on your credit report.
Don’t pass up your legal right to pull your credit report once a year. Beyond that, if you are looking into getting a loan, attempting to improve your credit score, or just looking out for identity thieves, pull your credit report often enough to make sure your credit information is correct.