Free Credit Reports and Their Availability


Free credit scores are available through the three main crediting bureaus in the United States. These credit reports are provided once free of charge in every 12 month period to all citizens. These credit reports are made available to consumers as provided by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), in an effort to give consumers an avenue to check and repair their credit histories as needed. Through this process consumers can access more easily the reports from the crediting bureaus, making it easier to manage their credit profile.  With this 12 month structure, all consumers can legally request and receive at least one free credit report, from any of the three credit reporting agencies.

 

 

Frequently reviewing your reports will help ensure you are looking at the most updated information.  It also can be an essential tool in warning of fraudulent accounts made in your name before they proliferate.  Usually the process of updating paid bills and cleared debts can take a few weeks, so your accounts will not be reported instantly.

 

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Comparing Credit Reports

 

Credit reports should be compared with the receipts for the payments made and the debts cleared. It is recommended, every consumer should save and store at least 7 years of all bill and payment history.  If there is a dispute, these saved items will provide proof to your claims.  If a lender is reporting to a credit bureau a late or missed payment, you can check your files.  Should you find the disputed check or payment proof and it is on time, this receipt will now serve you in reversing the error on your report with ease.

 

It is also important to compare the credit reports of the three agencies. They are independent companies, competitors actually, and make no effort to work with one another to maintain similar reports on consumers. The credit reporting bureaus can make errors in making the reports themselves and there are also chances that the lenders may not have provided correct information to these bureaus. Additionally some lenders will report to one bureau both positive and negative information, but not to the others.  Hence credit reports should be compared and each reporting bureau credit report review completed independently of the other.   

 

Benefits of Checking the Credit Reports

 

By checking their credit reports, consumers can secure many kinds of benefits. These include but are not limited to:

Improving your credit score: By finding errors on your credit reports you can dispute them immediately. Removing out of date or inaccurate negative items will greatly increase your score rapidly. These errors have to be fixed by the credit reporting agencies within a period of 30 days as per the FCRA. All disputed errors should be sent with a copy of proof. This will help in resolving the matter faster.

Financial gains:  Through the process of resolving errors on credit reports, consumers can get various kinds of financial benefits. These benefits include lower interest loans, improved employment opportunities, easy availability of financial aids and various other benefits also. The more money you can borrow at lower interest rates, the more money will stay in your wallet.

 

Video: How to Detect Credit Problems and Identity Theft

 

More Opportunity:  The single greatest advantage to an accurate and positive credit report is the opportunity you will have to borrow.  We all need to borrow at times, and some borrowing can lead to more income down the road.  If you are looking to open a business, buy an income or residential property, or invest otherwise, you need to have access to credit.

 

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Credit Reports and Their Importance

 

Credit reports are the determining tools for all kinds of financial aids. Hence it is very important to check these reports thoroughly and often. This helps in improving credit scores but also helps in preventing identity theft. It ensures that your creditworthiness is maintained along with getting all these other kinds of financial benefits.  Check your credit diligently, and check it often.

 

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