Do you know what your credit score is? If not, you should get to know it better, because it’s an important number that can impact all aspects of your life. Whether you’re applying for a new job or trying to figure out whether you can afford to buy a house, getting your free credit score can help you make better financial decisions and understand the implications of any choices you make in life.
You can request your free credit report either by visiting one of the 3 credit bureaus Equifax, Transunion and Experian, or you can request from all 3 bureaus at once using Annual Credit Report website. To get your free credit report, follow these three simple easy steps.
Step 1: Fill Out an Online Form
The first step to getting your free credit report is to sign up for a credit monitoring service ( don’t worry it’s FREE😊). You can do this directly on the Annual Credit Report website to avoid filling the same information on 3 different websites. This step has three sections; Legal Name, Current U.S Address, and Previous U.S Address.
In the Legal Name section, you will provide information such as; Your First Name, Middle Name (optional), Last name, Date of Birth, and your Social Security Number.
The Second section has to do with your Current Address. The address you will provide must be a U.S address to enable the credit reporting bureaus find your information. You will provide your House Address, City, State, and Zip(the first 5 digits, and the last 4 digits).
The Third section is not mandatory if you have lived at your current address for more than 2 years. But if you are only less than 2 years at your current address, you will need to fill out the Previous address section.
Once you have provided all the mandatory information, it’s time to move on to the next step by clicking the big red “Next” button at the bottom of the form.
Step 2: Pick the Report you Want To See
In this step, you will have the option to select which of the three main credit reports you’d like to access. You can choose from Equifax, Experian, or, TransUnion.
The three credit bureaus all have slightly different formats for their reports, so it’s important that you pick the report from the company that has the information about your credit history on file. But if you are not sure of which one to select, you can pick all three.
Once you have decided on which report you want to see, it’s time to move on to the next and final step.
Step 3: Request and Review your Report
Before viewing your credit score, you will still have to answer a few hard questions to make sure you are the one requesting these report. You might even need to provide some records like past loan, or last phone contract. These hard questions are meant solely for security reasons to make sure no one else but you can see your credit report.
Once you receive your credit report, you should review it to make sure all the information on the report is accurate. If you find any inaccurate information on any of your reports such as; late payments or incorrect credit limit amounts, name, address, etc, you should contact the credit bureau or file a dispute immediately to rectify this error.
Filing a dispute is of course FREE and you shouldn’t waste any time to do so. You only have to file the dispute at the particular credit bureau with the inaccurate information on your credit report. To see how you can file dispute regarding errors on your credit report, you can check this free resource on the Federal Trade Commission’s website, or the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s website.
So how long does it take to get your free credit score?
It usually takes about 3 – 7 working days to get your free credit report from the three major credit bureaus in the US: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. But if you want your credit report immediately, you should be aware of the service provider because there might be a little fee involved.
Only use reputable companies with a strong track record to avoid scams. There are a lot of scammers online trying to steal your personal information by offering you a fake credit report service.
There you have it: The 3 easy steps to get your free credit report. If your credit score is not in good standing, you can always start working on improving it. Here is a free guide on 10 simple ways to improve your credit score.
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Thanks reading and we wish you all the best in obtaining and managing a solid financial life.