You know how important it is to monitor your credit. You need a good credit score to rent or buy a home, get a decent interest rate on a car, to pay a reasonable amount for car insurance, and sometimes to even get a job. Little problems on your credit report can cost you thousands of dollars in extra fees, costs, and interest.
However, monitoring your own credit can be very time consuming. Even if you sign up for alerts to your credit, it is possible for misinformation to appear. There are multiple credit reporting agencies. Watching your information can take plenty of time.
Who Reports Credit?
There are three main credit reporting agencies. They are Equifax, Experian, and Transunion. They use similar methods to determine your credit score. While the reports will be similar, they are not identical. In addition, there are other credit reporting agencies that do not use your FICO score. If you are applying for credit, you do not get to choose which credit reporting agency your creditor will use.
What Does a Credit Report Say?
Your credit report gives your FICO score or VantageScore. These scores help lenders and creditors determine your creditworthiness. They not only make decisions about lending based on these scores, but also help determine your interest rates.
FICO Scores originated with the Fair Isaac Corporation, which developed a system to provide standardized credit scores to determine creditworthiness. A FICO score is a three-digit number from 300 to 850. A very poor score is 300-499. A poor score is 500-600. A fair score is 601-660. A good score is 661-780. An excellent score is 781-850.
While initially created as an alternative to FICO scores, VantageScore is becoming more similar to FICO. It also shows credit on a 300 to 850 scale, and they are used by the three major credit reporting agencies. The score ranges are similar to FICO scores.
Can You Check Your Own Score?
Yes, you can. All three credit reporting agencies are required to provide you with one free credit report each year. You can set a schedule to get one report each four months, so that you have consistent yearly monitoring of your credit. In addition, you may get monthly access to one or more credit reports as free benefits with certain credit cards, checking accounts, or other financial accounts.
What Do You Look for On Your Credit Report?
You are looking for negative information, which could lower your credit score. Slow pays, no pays, and collections will all negatively impact your credit report. So will using too high of a percentage of your credit.
Can You Get Rid of Mistakes?
If there are mistakes on your credit report, you have the right to notify the credit reporting agency. This is known as a dispute. Once notified of the mistake, the credit agency has the burden of making sure the information is true. If it is not, then they need to remove it from your report and change your score.
What Can Emerald Credit Solutions Do for Me?
We can monitor your credit and dispute mistakes. This saves you time and effort. We know what to look for in credit reports and how to dispute misinformation. The result is that we can help repair your credit much more quickly than most people taking a DIY approach.