All About Getting Your Annual Credit Report

Getting your annual credit report from each of the three reporting agencies, Experian, TransUnion and Equifax, should be as routine as going to the doctor.  You want to maintain good credit and it is essential that you know what is reflected on your credit report.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act allows you to get a free annual credit report from each of these agencies.  You can write to them directly or you can obtain a credit report from all agencies by going to one of the many websites online that will provide this service for you.   If you choose to go to an agency that advertises to give you a credit report from all three bureaus, you will probably have to pay a small fee.  This is well worth the money if you need the report in a hurry. 

If you suspect that you are the victim of identity theft if it imperative that you get an annual credit report right away.  If you have already obtained a credit report, it is well worth the fee to pay for an additional report if you feel that someone may be using your name and other information to obtain and use credit.  Identity theft can be devastating to your credit and can end up costing you money as well as time.  It can  sometimes take years for the repercussions of identity theft to go away, and sometimes they never do.  Identity theft is one of the main reasons why you should obtain an annual credit report like clockwork.

In addition to lenders looking at your credit report, others who may look at your credit report will include landlords and even employers.  More and more employers are asking for background checks as well as credit reports from prospective employees.  You can refuse to have a credit check, but chances are that you will not get the job.  If a prospective employer finds something in your credit background that he does not like, he will most likely not hire you and not tell you why.  This is why it is so important to know what is on your credit report. 

Another reason for obtaining an annual credit report is to prevent you from being turned down for loans. This can be embarrassing, especially if you are counting on the money to do something important or timely.  Most people do not find that they have something wrong with their credit until they are turned down for a loan.  It is at this time that the lender will usually show them their credit report.  They may be shocked to find items that do not even belong to them on the report. 

It is better to make sure that your credit stays in tip top shape so that lenders, landlords and prospective employers can look at your credit and you know it is accurate.  One way to insure this is to order an annual credit report from each of the three credit reporting agencies.  This can end up saving you a lot of trouble as well as time and money. 

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