Understanding a credit report in the country
A credit report is a report prepared by the credit bureau, containing a detailed history of the credit of an individual. The account details and credit inquiries provided to the credit agencies are listed in the credit report. The credit report of an individual may contain personal details such as the full name of the individual along with the variances, the person’s date of birth, their employment background, social security numbers along with the variances, and also the current as well as past addresses.
A bankruptcy filing is retained on the credit report of an individual for an average of 10 years. Negative information of an individual, such as delay in payments, collections, charge-offs, etc. remains on the credit report for 7 years.
A credit report contains detailed credit history, such as the date on which the account was opened, data related to high account balances, the recent payments made, credit limit, amount of loan of the person, and the number as well as the type of accounts in good status as well as those that have past dues.
What are the various sections of a credit report of an individual?
- The credit report of an individual is divided into four sections.
- The topmost section of the credit report contains the social security number and personal details of the individual.
- The second section of the credit report has most of the reports that contain information within the lines of credit, also known as trade lines.
- Bankruptcies, tax liens, judgments, and other public records are included in the third section of a credit report.
- The last or fourth section of a credit report contains a list of all the lenders or entities who have accessed the credit report of the individual.
How does a credit bureau prepare such reports?
- This credit report prepared by a credit bureau is largely dependent on the information they collect from various sources.
- Such data is obtained by a credit bureau by observing the individual’s bill-paying patterns as well as by acquiring the individual’s other relevant personal details.
- The credit bureau earns their income when the lenders pay a certain amount at the time of accessing the credit report of an individual.
- The country has 3 major bureaus for the preparation of such reports.
- These major credit reporting bureaus are Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.
Who uses such credit reports?
- Such reports are used by lenders to determine and ascertain the individual’s creditworthiness when it comes to giving them a loan, insurance policy, or in case they’re renting property, etc.
- Generally, the lenders who access the credit report of an individual are creditors, insurers, landlords etc.
- An individual can also give permission in writing for their employers to access their credit report.
How can you get a free credit report?
- Every individual is eligible to get a free credit report from each of the 3 credit bureaus.
- These 3 credit bureaus have to provide the individual with their credit report once in a period of 12 months.
- The pattern to get these 3 credit reports depends on the individual’s preference.
- He or she can ask for all the 3 credit reports at the same time or can space out and spread their acquisition throughout the year.
How can you get a credit report online?
- The credit bureaus do not operate under the government of the country.
- However, the government of the country has authorized a website to allow an individual to get their credit report online.
- The official website to acquire free copies of an individual’s credit report online is AnnualCreditReport.com.
- Every individual is also eligible to get a credit report online from the 3 credit bureaus.
When can a complaint be filed on a credit reporting agency?
A complaint may be filed under any of the following cases:
- If the result of a dispute with a credit reporting agency is dissatisfactory to the individual.
- If the credit reporting agencies fail to reach out to the dispute request of the individual.
- If there has been an improper utilization of an individual’s credit report.
- If one did not get their credit report copy.
Whom can you file a complaint with?
- The complaint on a credit reporting agency can be filed with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
- This complaint can be filed with them either online or by giving them a call on 1-855-411-2372.