credit reports agencies track all the details of your financial life, and the information they collect is used to calculate a simplified number representing your creditworthiness known as your credit score. The agencies, like Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, provide businesses that offer loans and credit cards with your report — an objective, detailed account of your financial situation and history. The report also contains public records such as legal matters and bankruptcies.

While every credit bureau might have slight differences in what’s included in your report, they all include personal information, credit account information, debt payment history and inquiries. A review of what you’ll find in a credit report will help you understand why your reports might differ, so you can be prepared to spot any errors – and avoid any surprises the next time you apply for credit.

A credit report begins with personal information such as your name (and variations, including nicknames and surnames you’ve used before), your birth date, social security number and previous addresses. Your account information is a list of all current and past credit accounts (such as credit cards, loan accounts and mortgages) that have been opened in your name. It includes account status — whether it’s open, closed or inactive, account balances, the credit limit on each account and your debt-to-credit ratio. It also lists all of your creditors, their phone numbers and your relationship with them. The report also contains details on any debts you’ve sent to collections and a summary of your payment history — a factor that accounts for 35% of your credit score.

Your report also includes your contact information, such as your address, email address and phone number, so that lenders can get in touch with you. Your report also lists all the inquiries made of your report — either by lenders or by other businesses, such as background check companies, who are authorized to request a report for employment reasons. The report identifies whether the inquiry was a hard or soft inquiry, and it lists the date and time of each. Hard inquiries typically impact your credit score, while soft ones do not.

The final section of a credit report includes any relevant public records, such as bankruptcy filings, tax liens and monetary judgments owed by you to creditors or other agencies. It also lists your current and former employers, and the names and phone numbers of any co-applicants on any credit applications you’ve made.

A credit report can be a helpful tool when you need to make a big purchase, such as a home or vehicle. But you should also keep in mind that it might not be the only thing a business looks at before extending you credit, so diligent monitoring of your credit report can help ensure accuracy and prevent identity theft. Luckily, you can access your credit report for free at any time – and it won’t hurt your score to check frequently.

By Admin

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