Building good credit is essential. Whether you’re purchasing a new car, applying for a mortgage or even trying to open a new utilities account, your credit score will determine if you’re eligible. recommends checking your credit report before embarking on any major life decision as your credit score will be used by companies to see if you meet requirements. Credit history reports are also valuable tools used to fight identity theft.

Due to the importance of your credit score, it is crucial to use a safe and secure service. advises using ClickYourScores to view your credit score and report since your credit will be monitored 24/7. Round-the-clock monitoring ensures that no sudden changes affect your current standing. ClickYourScore’s service is committed to keeping your credit score and report up-to-date and accurate.

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What will I find on my credit report?

California residents will find that credit reports are a detailed summary of your borrowing and repayment history. There are four major categories of data that reporting agencies include.

Identifying Information

This includes your name and address, Social Security Number, date of birth, and other information used to identify you.

Trade Lines

Trade lines are all of your credit accounts. Records of bank cards, credit cards, auto loans, mortgages, student loans, and any other lines of credit you have ever opened. Trade lines also indicate how much credit you have versus how much income you receive, and is referred to as your debt to income ratio.

Credit Inquires

Anytime you apply for a new credit card, home loan or line of credit, your credit report is assessed. This section provides you with a list of companies and institutions that have obtained your credit report.

Public Records and Collections

Agencies collecting credit report information will also include public record data. This includes any court proceedings, lawsuits and delinquent debt sent to a collection agency.

Do you know your credit score? Major purchases often rely on your credit report score, and you are encouraged to order a credit history report. In doing so, you have the chances to fix your credit report, improve your credit score, and be prepared when applying for a loan or line of credit.

What is my credit score?

An individual’s credit score (also called a Fair Issac Corp score or FICO), is the result of a mathematical algorithm and allows lenders or creditors to gauge the likelihood that an individual will pay back a loan on time and in full.

Scores generally range between 500 and 800, and can be slightly different depending on which institution the report came from. Credit scores under 650 are considered a bad credit score, and anything over 680 is classified as a good credit score.

Having a good credit score is important as it can lower your interest rates, allow lenders to increase your spending limits, and the overall loan approval process will go smoother. There are many companies that offer easy-to-use online forms for checking your credit score.

Different Types of Credit Reports

Annual Credit Report

Every US resident is entitled by law to a free credit report from each credit reporting agency once every twelve months. This is the result of the FACT Act (Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act).

Business Credit Report

Business credit reports are used to determine the credit history for a business instead of an individual. This is important for businesses applying for loans, lines of credit or looking to purchase in large quantities. It is smart for business owners to run a credit history check on companies they plan to conduct business with.

Employee Credit Check

An employee credit check is a credit check performed by an employer during the hiring process. This is most commonly done among financial institutions, as it helps employers determine the financial responsibility of a potential employee.

Rental Credit Check

Rental credit checks are reports used by landlords when screening potential tenants. They include rental histories, delinquent or broken rental agreements, and other information useful to determine if a lessee will pay rent on time.

Save time and run a credit report today. recommends using a trusted source to check your credit score.

How do I monitor my credit score?

To monitor your credit score, there are plenty of agencies, companies, websites, and institutions that offer credit reports. Some are free, others charge a fee but remember, every person is allowed one free credit report every year by law. Many companies, including banks, offer credit score monitoring, which means they will send you a report every month or few months, also notifying you of suspicious activity.

Monitoring your credit report doesn’t just make good financial sense, it can also be a tool to fight identity theft. Millions of people have fallen victim to identity theft and in most cases, have their credit scores affected by delinquent credit accounts opened by someone else.

Clean Up Your Credit Report

Once you have your credit report, credit history and credit score, you can begin to clean it up if necessary. The first step is to go over your credit report and verify that everything on it was initiated by you.

If you find items that shouldn’t be on there or do not look familiar, address those first. Contact the credit companies or whatever business it came from to start fraud proceedings.

The next step is to pay off any debt you have in collection or with a collection agency. Get in touch with the company and figure out your options. A lot of times, credit report agencies are willing to cut a deal on a lower one-time payment or lower monthly payments to help you pay it off.

Finally, start paying off the remaining debt – starting with whichever loan or line of credit has the highest interest rate. This will allow you to pay things off in the quickest way possible while incurring the least amount of added interest debt.

Cleaning up your credit report will help you achieve any future plans you may have to make a large purchase, get a job, or save for your retirement.

Last updated on Thursday, October 15 2020.