Know Your Credit – Now
Before You Buy
Before you even start to buy a home you will need to know your credit and what may be on there. There are ways to know your credit without having to contact a lender or rely on sites like Credit Karma.
Before we jump too far into getting your credit you must be aware that there are actually three main credit repositories who determine your creditworthiness. They are Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
When a lender looks at your credit they will first look at all three scores from each of the three repositories. Each repository has its own algorithm on determining creditworthiness.
When you have an account with a credit card company or an installment loan, these are known as a creditor.
Each creditor may report to one, two, or all three repositories. There is no law stating that they have to report at all or to all three. When they do report they have to, by law, provide accurate information. This is why all three scores are important. A creditor may report to TransUnion but may not report to Equifax, and vice versa.
When a mortgage lender pulls your credit they will want a tri-merge report which means that they will see what each repository is reporting and they will see the resulting score.
This set of scores are known as your FICO (Fair Issac Corporation) score.
When looking at the three numerical values the lender will always use the one that comes in the middle. This means if your Experian score was 720, your Equifax score was 685, and TransUnion was 705, the score that she would use is the TransUnion score of 705. They will toss out the high one and the low one.
This is why only knowing one is not too helpful. You will not know if it is the high one, the low one, or the middle one.
Get Your Free Report
You are entitled to know what is on your credit and you can get this for free, well once a year that is.
Because of the recent computer hacks and other cyber-crimes people’s credit is at an all-time high for being at risk. Thus, knowing your credit is very important.
In September 2017, Equifax was hacked exposing personal information to 143 million people.
It is also known that about 1 in 5 people will have errors on their report. This can mean that you may have one or more negative items on your report without you even knowing it is there. And identity theft is also at an all-time high.
The site that use to be the go-all for your credit is now reserved strictly to Experian, thus only one of the repositories. That site is www.freecreditreport.com. You can also get your report and scores from Equifax and TransUnion separately.
The one place you can get your credit report is through www.annualcreditreport.com or you can call 1-877-322-8228. This is the only site that you can get your free report as per the FTC. You will obtain all three reports from this site, for free.
If you find errors on your report you can begin the dispute process by disputing any errors to each of the repositories that are seen by going to the repository websites for each TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian.
Everyone is entitled to know what is on their credit. You can check yours for free once a year on your own. It is the best way to know what is going on before you try to buy something big or anything else that involves your credit.
Credit is used everywhere in America today. It is needed for renting a home, buying a home, and possibly even to get hired for a job. Knowing where you stand is critical in planning out your future.