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Credit Reports

Credit Reports

Credit Report

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Get a credit report today!  Are you a first-time homebuyer interested in your credit standing?  Maybe you are curious about your personal finances?  Is it debt consolidation in your future?  Looking for a mortgage or loan?  It’s important to take time and get your credit in order, before looking for a home loan.  Every consumer should check his/her credit to make sure it is correct.  Start with an online credit report.  Learn how your credit report can help you get on track. 

Facts About Pulling Credit Checks

As long as you are looking for a mortgage to purchase a home, a mortgage to refinance a home, a home equity loan, a line of credit or an auto loan will only count as one inquiry.   These inquiries asking for your credit report need to be made within a 14-day period and will be shown as one inquiry.  However, if you are looking for a personal loan or credit card, each inquiry is looked at as a separate inquiry.

Before Looking for a Home Loan – Take Advantage of Credit Check

In many cases, it is to your advantage to review your credit report/file, prior to looking for a home loan.  Check your report/file for accuracy and completeness.  You may find discrepancies that can be resolved, prior to locating a home and starting the loan process.  Find out how to get your credit check and prevent future problems.

Are You A Credit Risk?

Lenders make their decisions based on whether an individual has too many late payments and/or slow payments.  There are three categories that lenders use to assess credit risk.  These categories are revolving credit, installment credit, and housing credit.  Lenders have guidelines within each category that they use to identify individuals with credit risk.  The following is a list of categories and their corresponding guidelines.

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  • Revolving Credit (department store credit cards, credit cards) – These debts may be red-flagged if they have a history of any payment of 60 days or more past due and no more than two payments of 30 days past due.
  • Installment Credit (car loans, furniture loans, appliance loans, boat loans, motorcycle loans) – These debts may be red-flagged if any payment of 60 days or more is past due and no more than one payment 30 days is past due.
  • Housing Debt (mortgage, rent) – These debts maybe be red-flagged, if any payment is past due.Lenders can use canceled checks covering the past 12 months or a loan payment history provided by a mortgage company.

Any discrepancies or late payments in any category should be clarified, in order for the credit report to be re-examined.  If your credit report contains negative information that is accurate, however, there are good reasons for believing that you will repay a loan, be sure to explain your situation.

Find out today – if you are a credit risk. 

What do Credit Reports Contain?

It is important that you check your credit to make sure the report is accurate.  Knowing what is inside a credit report will help you evaluate your own credit report.  Although styles, formats, and coding cues may be different, depending on which credit reporting bureau is used, typically consumer credit reports include four main areas.  These areas are: identifying information, credit information, public record, and inquiries.

  • Identifying Information – This area includes basic information such as name, nicknames, current and previous addresses, social security number, date of birth, and current and previous employers.  In most cases, this information is attained through completed credit applications.  The accuracy of this information can be a reflection of how completely, consistently, and clearly these applications are filled out by you when applying for credit.
  • Credit Information – This area includes information on each account.  It contains the opening date, credit limit or loan amount, balance, monthly payment, and payment pattern during the past several years.  Other individuals (spouse or cosigner) besides yourself that are also responsible for payments are listed in this section.  The accuracy of this information comes from the companies that hold your accounts.
  • Public Record Information – This area includes information on federal bankruptcy records, state and county court records, tax liens, monetary judgments, and in some cases overdue child support payments.  The accuracy of this information is found through public records.
  • Inquires – This area includes names of those, who have obtained a copy of your credit report for any reason.  This accuracy comes from the credit reporting agency, itself.  This documentation remains available for as long as two years, per federal law.

What is Credit Score?

One type of credit score is given through a credit bureau.  This score is calculated using the information found on file at the credit bureau.  It is also created at the time the credit information was requested.  Thus, a credit score is a single frozen moment in time.  At that given moment your credit score reveals your past and current credit use, along with a prediction of your future credit performance.

Credit scoring applies one set of rules to everybody.  These rules allow for behavior patterns based on age.  Credit scoring differentiates between the credit patterns of individuals.  It also contains a scoring model that has a list of questions used to predict future credit performance.  Credit scoring does not consider race, religion, gender, marital status, birthplace, or current address.

Learn what your credit score is today!

First Step Toward Better Credit

Your credit score shouldn’t be a mystery.  Find out your credit score today. 

Many times people have unexpected expenses that can throw you off track.  A sick family member, a couple of late payments, an accident, child support – all can cause you to fall behind.  Don’t let your past get you down.  See what your credit score is today and get on the path to better credit.

Get relief from bad credit and overdue bills.  Take the first step by obtaining your credit score.  Once you have that in hand, identify the next steps needed to get yourself back on the road to recovery.

Uncover your credit score now.  It is time to start mending the past.

Your Fair Credit Reporting Rights

The federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) promotes the accuracy, fairness, and privacy of the information of the files of consumer reporting agencies.  Consumer reporting agencies include credit bureaus and specialty agencies. 

The following is a list of several key rights covered under the FCRA:

  • Given notice of information in your file being used against you – If your application for credit, insurance, or employment is denied/or adverse action is taken against you due to examining your credit report or consumer report, you must be informed.  Those using this information must tell you, along with giving you the name, address, and phone number of the agency that has provided this information.
  • Right to know what is in your file – At any time you may request and obtain all the information in your file from a consumer reporting agency.  This action is called a “file disclosure”.  In order to make this request, you will be required to provide proper identification.  This may include your social security number.  Disclosure of your file is free if it meets any of the following guidelines:
    • Adverse action was taken against you, due to the information in your file
    • Victim of identify theft, which requires a fraud alert placed in your file
    • Inaccurate information inside your file resulting in fraud
    • Participant of public assistance
    • Unemployed, but expect to apply for employment in 60 days
  • Right to ask for a credit score – You may request a credit score from consumer reporting agencies.  These agencies create scores and distribute scores.  Credit scores are numerical summaries of your creditworthiness.  These credit scores are used by mortgage lenders.  In most cases, you will need to pay a fee to get your credit file.
  • Right to dispute inaccurate or incomplete information – If you find that information inside your file is incomplete or inaccurate; the consumer reporting agency holding your file must investigate.  There are procedures that must be followed during the dispute period.
  • Corrections and deletions must be made in order to have an accurate file – Inaccurate, incomplete, or unverifiable information must be removed or corrected, usually within 30 days.  However, a consumer reporting agency may report information as soon as it is verified as correct.
  • No reporting of outdated negative information – In most cases, the negative information on an individual, that is more than seven years old or bankruptcies of over 10 years will not be reported by the consumer credit reporting agencies.
  • Limited access to your file – Only those with a valid need have access to your file.  Examples of those will a valid need are an insurer, employer, landlord, a creditor with the application, and other businesses.  The Fair Credit Reporting Act specifies those who have a valid need for access.
  • Consent must be given prior to employers receiving your file – Consumer reporting agencies are not allowed to pass on information about you to your employer or potential employers without your written permission.
  • Reduce the number of credit/insurance offers through your credit report – A toll-free phone number must be included in advertisements/offers from insurance/credit companies to allow you to discontinue unsolicited contact.  You can choose to remove your name and address from these lists.
  • Collect damages due to violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act – If a user of the consumer reports or provider of information to the consumer reporting agency or the consumer reporting agency violates the Fair Credit Reporting Act, you may be able to sue in state or federal court.