credit cards

How do I: Get my credit report?

Topic: CREDIT
Who is affected: CONSUMERS AT EVERY STAGE OF LIFE
DEGREE OF DIFFICULTY: BEGINNER
What you'll need: Social security number

What you need to know

Your credit history affects your life in many ways. It impacts the rate of interest you pay on most loans and credit cards, your car insurance payment and whether you can get a mortgage loan.

Many people have at least one mistake in their credit histories. You should review your report at least once a year to be sure it's accurate and to check for identity fraud. 

There are three ways you can get your credit report:

  1. Online. Go to AnnualCreditReport.com, the only authorized source for consumers to access their annual credit report online for free. You can also combine credit reports and various monitoring services by paying fees at various Web sites, including Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.  
  2. By phone. Call (877) 322-8228.
  3. By mail. You may complete and mail the Annual Credit Report Request form to the address on the form

The law requires only that you be provided with a free report from each of the credit reporting agencies each year, which does not include your credit score. You can order your score either online or by phone. Prices vary but typically are below $15.

Step-by-step
Can you guess your credit score? Get an estimate of your real-world score in minutes with the FICO Score Estimator.
Order one report every four months for year-round monitoring.
Get your credit report from AnnualCreditReport.com only some companies with names that look or sound similar charge fees.
You're still entitled to a free credit report if you receive public assistance or have been denied a loan, insurance policy or job based on your credit report.

 

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