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Why You Should Be Worried About an Inaccurate Credit Report
Your credit report is a document constructed based on your personal information and the way your bills are paid. The compilation of this information determines a number, usually between 300 and 850, which is your designated credit score. This number assists lenders in analyzing whether or not you are a viable candidate for a loan. In addition to this, there are many situations in which knowing and understanding your credit score come in handy. It is a good idea to take charge of your credit report and review it annually. Due to the fact that your credit score is a determining factor in a variety of situations, you will want to ensure that potential creditors and other entities are not receiving an inaccurate credit report.
What’s in A Credit Report
The information in your credit report goes beyond just a score. It also contains:
- Your home address;
- Your method of payment for paying bills;
- Any lawsuits wherein you were named a party;
- Your arrest record, if applicable; and
- Your bankruptcy case(s), if applicable.
Companies that report your credit score sell your information to interested parties, such as:
- Banks or other lenders;
- Insurance companies; and
- Potential employers.
Your credit report contains so much personal information because the entities listed above use it to evaluate various applications you have submitted, such as, those for a new job, a mortgage or car loan, insurance, or a credit card.
Why Should I Check My Credit Report?
Although the Fair Credit Reporting Act has fostered better accuracy in credit reporting, it is still a good idea to check your report for any errors or omissions. Inaccurate credit reports can affect many aspects of your life, so you want to make sure the information reported is true and correct. Check your report annually will help with:
Getting a loan. Lenders save the loans with their best interest rates for people with good credit scores. If the information reported on your score is wrong and has caused your score to decrease, you will be stuck with a higher interest rate – or worse, lenders could decide to pass entirely and you’ll be left without any money to buy a new car or your dream house.
Getting a job. What if your credit report erroneously shows you have an arrest record for fraud? You can likely kiss that job at the financial company goodbye. Your report may not have such glaring inaccuracies, but it’s best to make sure that all of the personal information contained on it is correct or it could delay or eliminate your chances of getting a job, insurance, or a credit card.
Catching identity theft. Thieves who get access to even just a small amount of your personal information can do major damage to your credit, like applying for credit cards in your name, running up huge balances, and not paying the bill. Credit card companies assume it’s you stiffing them, and they send you to collections and report the outstanding balance to your report. If you review your report regularly, you can catch these issues and fix them quickly so as not to affect all aspects of your credit.
Get a Free Credit Report
You are entitled to one free credit report annually from the 3 national credit reporting companies – Experion, TransUnion, and Equifax. However, you should not contact the companies individually. To receive this report, you can:
- Go online to annualcreditreport.com;
- Call 1-877-322-8228; or
- Mail an Annual Credit Report Request to
Annual Credit Report Request Service
P.O. Box 105281
Atlanta, GA 30348-5281
Contact an Ohio Debt Lawyer
Inaccuracies on your credit report can have lasting negative effects on several aspects of your life. If you’ve discovered problems with your report, you may find it beneficial to discuss your situation with an Ohio debt lawyer.
The attorneys at Luftman, Heck & Associates extensive knowledge and experience regarding credit reports and how they influence decisions by lenders. They can educate you on your options and help you decide what approach will best fix your issue.