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All reviews, research, news and assessments of any kind on The Tokenist are compiled using a strict editorial review process by our editorial team. Neither our writers nor our editors receive direct compensation of any kind to publish information on TheTokenist.io. Our company, Tokenist Media LLC, is community supported and may receive a small commission when you purchase products or services through links on our website. Click here for a full list of our partners and an in-depth explanation on how we get paid.

Thinking about getting a loan but noticed a change in your credit score recently? Maybe you want to figure out why, or maybe you just want to check that there’s no inaccurate information on there – mistakes do happen.

Your credit report is a helpful way to manage your financial data, holding information like your payment history and credit history, which financial institutions depend on to decide whether you’re a worthy borrower. Keeping an eye on your credit report, therefore, is crucial if you plan on taking out any huge loans, like a mortgage, in your lifetime.

Typically, you are entitled to a free credit report from one of the three major credit bureaus every 12 months. Normally, accessing a credit report any more than this will cost you.

However, with many facing harsh financial times as a result of COVID-19, everyone is entitled to a free financial report each week from Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. And accessing them is simple!

In this guide we’ll show you how you can get your free credit report from the three major credit bureaus, why they matter, and how often you should check them to help keep your score in tip-top shape.

Overview & Summary

Here is a brief summary of the top five key points in this guide:

  1. Under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act, you are entitled to a free copy of your credit report from the three major credit bureaus once a year – you just need to request it.
  2. You can access a copy of your free credit report from one of the three major credit bureaus by visiting www.AnnualCreditReport.com.
  3. Keep an eye out for imposter sites attempting to mimic annualcreditreport.com.
  4. A credit report holds all of the positive and negative elements of your credit history. 
  5. Checking your report once every 30 days is probably the most ideal because credit reports go through a full cycle of changes in this time.

What is a Free Credit Report?

Under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act, you are entitled to a free copy of your credit report from the three major credit bureaus once a year – you just need to request it. You can do this through either Experian, TransUnion, or Equifax.

These three companies collect information on your financial history including your record of paying bills, public records related to debt (like bankruptcy) and any inquiries made about your credit.

These reports make up the basis for your credit score and so, companies buy them to help them decide how much risk a customer poses when deciding whether to offer loans, credit cards, insurance, and even to assess your ability to take on a new position.

John Ulzheimer, a credit expert who formerly worked with Equifax and FICO said, “The importance of checking your credit report can’t be understated.” The reports can also help determine your likelihood of becoming a victim of identity theft.

How do I Obtain My Credit Report for Free?

You can access a copy of your free credit report from one of the three major credit bureaus. 

Consumers can access a free credit report easily through the Experian website.

Website: To get your free Experian credit report, you can visit www.AnnualCreditReport.com. After answering some questions, you can download the report. We suggest downloading the report there and then. It could be up to 12 pages long, depending on the length of your credit history, like if you’ve applied for a mortgage before, or credit cards.

Toll-free number: If you call 877-322-8228, the report can be mailed to you.

Mailing address. To conduct the process almost entirely by mail, download the annual credit report request form, fill it out and mail it to Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281.

What Does a Credit Report Look Like?

A credit report holds all of the fantastic and not so fantastic elements of your credit history in plane site. The reports have been designed specifically in such a way that they are relatively easy to read and understand.

The first part of the report will display your personal information like your number, addresses dating back decades, contact information, and current and former employers. Following this are the public records, for example a bankruptcy.

After this, all the details about problem accounts appear, such as anytime you missed a payment or any that went to collections. Negative marks can stay on your credit file for up to seven years. 

Person holding an iPad to improve their credit score fast
Your credit report will contain your credit score, and more.

Keep an eye out for a drop in your credit score if your repayments were accommodated in any way by creditors throughout COVID-19. After some creditors began helping ease the financial stress for consumers, some people are now noticing it has impacted their credit score.

If this has happened to you it would be a good idea to contact Experian, or one of the three major credit bureaus and ask them to investigate, and correct the issue.

Following this is the list of satisfactory accounts – these are the ones that have been reported to be in good standing.

Moving on, you’ll see the inquiry section. This will show the various request types for your credit information. The promotional requests reference the companies that have received limited information about your credit to help them determine your risk for loans, credit cards or insurance. 

You might see some other credit inquiries displayed from a time when you compared loans or mortgages, for example. Thankfully, these kinds of credit inquiries are not as detrimental to your overall report as they once were. You can begin making notes on what you want to get removed from your credit report to begin the process of improving your credit score.

📝 Why Should You Review Your Credit Reports?

Reading and understanding reports takes time and patience. Taking a quick look through and tossing it for recycling won’t do it justice. Experts recommend you set aside a fair amount of time – perhaps about an hour – to review it thoroughly.

We suggest three stages of review for each report. First, read through and note any questions you have. When you’ve done this, try and find the answers on a reputable site or get in touch with the credit bureau.

After this, you should attempt to highlight any inaccurate, out-of-date, or misinformation. Should you find any, you can dispute this information online or by mail. To finish, take a look at it from the lender’s perspective.

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that because you pay your bills on time you’ve nothing to worry about. Mistakes happen.

Your report can end up being confused for someone else, or it could show that you are at a higher risk for fraud. Knowing how to build credit, and what could prevent you from building credit will help make the overall process easier. 

🗓 How Often Should You Check Credit Reports?

Think about it like any other necessity in your life, visiting a dentist, a doctor. It’s not the most fun, but doing so once a year will improve your life. Checking your report once every 30 days is probably the most ideal because credit reports go through a full cycle of changes in this time.

If you haven’t had a chance to pull a free credit report in some time – or maybe ever – then consider pulling three reports at once so you’ll have a good idea of how you are rated on each of the credit reporting companies.

🦠 Free Credit Report Amid COVID-19

Typically, you can only access a report from the three major credit bureaus once every 12 months. However, throughout COVID-19, the credit reporting bureaus are offering free credit reports each week for the next year. To get your free report, go to annualcreditreport.com.

Reports should be free and accessible and no one should have to pay to see their own credit history.

If you need to pull out a credit card to pay for a credit report then you haven’t tried hard enough to find the numerous free options. Be careful not to go overboard with monitoring.

Doing so any more than once a month can make an already time consuming process slow and painful. You will see slight changes and additions here and there, but there won’t be any drastic differences.

Trading During Covid-19
Weekly credit reports are available for free during COVID-19.

It’s also worth noting that explanatory notes in credit reports have little impact because scoring formulas can’t read, so additional words won’t improve your score.

Another option to think about is a credit freeze. This would enable you to restrict access to your credit report. By law, the three major credit reporting agencies allow you to freeze your credit for free.

You can also contact Experian, or one of the other two reporting bureaus to request fraud alerts or credit freezes, or you can opt out of prescreened credit offers:

Experian

888-EXPERIAN (888-397-3742)

Equifax

800-685-1111

TransUnion

888-909-8872

Watch Out for Fraudulent Websites

There is only one website authorized to fill orders for your free credit report – annualcreditreport.com. This doesn’t mean that other websites won’t claim to offer a “free credit report”, “free credit monitoring”, or “free credit scores”. These are not covered under federal law. 

In some cases like these, the “free” product might have strings attached. For instance, some sites might ask you to sign up to a “free” service that changes to a paying service once the trial period ends.

Man creating fraudulent schemes to steal credit report scores
While there are some scams that target credit reports, following a few simple steps can decrease your susceptibility.

If you fail to cancel this period, you might be unknowingly agreeing to paying fees for the service. Some fraudulent, or imposter sites hijack the term “free report” or similar in their names; others will put a misspelled version of annualcreditreport.com in their name with the hope you mistype it on the official site.

Other times, you might be directed to other sites that try to convince you to buy something, or worse, try to collect personal details.

Experian, or any of the other credit reporting bureaus, will not request personal information from you by email. Should you receive an email or phone call, or get hit with a pop-up ad from a service claiming to be Experian, or any of the other reporting agencies, do not click on a link or respond to the message because it is more than likely a scam.

⚠️ What to Do if You Find Fraud in Your Credit Report

While mistakes do happen, some are more serious than others. Minor variations on your name and a listing of an address you never lived at could be a tell-tale sign of fraud. In addition, if you discover accounts in default that are not yours, this could be a sign of fraud, too.

The first thing you should do to rectify this is to contact the credit bureaus and the creditors to assess the information, and potentially dispute it. For example, if an unpaid debt shows on the account you might need to file a police report and affidavit.

This will help you stand out from those who tell creditors and credit bureaus the same thing, when their intention is simply to get out of paying a bill.

🕑 The Right Time to Check Your Credit Report

If you think you might want to make a major purchase in a few months or even in a few years, you should regularly check your free credit report to make sure it is accurate.

To give you more options and better interest rates, you should try to keep a high credit score, or work to improve it, if not. Don’t think you’re too young, either. From the age of 18 years, looking at your credit report is important, especially if you plan on making a big purchase in the future.

You are probably interested in owning a house during the course of your life. It’s a huge purchase, so getting the best interest rates possible can make a significant difference.

After all, excellent credit is one of the best ways to build wealth – it’s far more to your benefit to pay a 2% APR over a 4% APR on things you plan on buying.

Credit Report FAQs

Can I Get a Free Credit Report Once a Year?

Under federal law, you are entitled to a free copy of your credit report from each of the three nationwide bureaus once a year. You can access the report through annualcreditreport.com, this is the only site authorized by the Government to issue free credit reports.

Make sure you keep an eye on your credit report regularly. To help, you could leverage the leading credit monitoring services.

What is the Best Site to Get a Credit Report?

There is only one official site to get a free credit report, and that is annualreportcreditreport.com. Be aware of other fraudulent sites claiming to give free credit reports.

What Credit Report do Banks Use?

Banks pull credit reports from the three major bureaus when assessing a person’s likelihood to repay debt. These are Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. Understanding how to get a personal loan takes a bit of work. But doing the work will help you get the best possible rates.

Can I Get My Credit Report from a Bank?

You may be able to access your credit score for free through your bank or credit card issuer. Some banks offer free credit scores. These can be checked by logging into your account, or by reviewing your monthly statement.

Which Credit Report is Most Important?

Lenders use credit reports from one of the three major credit bureaus. These include:

  • Experian
  • Equifax
  • TransUnion

What Are the Mailing Addresses for the 3 Credit Bureaus

Experian: Experian National Consumer Assistance Center at P.O Box 4500, Allex, 

TX 75013. Alternatively, you can upload your document at experian.com/upload to submit it online.

Equifax: Equifax Disclosure Department, P.O. Box 740241, Atlanta, GA 30374.

TransUnion: TransUnion, Consumer Services Tea, P.O. Box 1000 Chester, PA 19022.

How Do I Get a Free Credit Report From all 3 Credit Bureaus

You have a right to one free credit report every year from the three credit bureaus. You can get your free copy by going to annualcreditreport.com, or calling 1-877-322-8228.

Does Checking my Credit Report Hurt my Credit?

No, checking your credit report will not hurt your credit. Checking your credit report regularly is recommended as it is a good way to ensure that information is accurate. When a financial firm conducts a hard inquiry in response to your credit application, this will impact your credit score. 

Are Four Hard Inquiries Bad?

Four hard inquiries within a short period could result in a lower score. According to FICO, people with six or more inquiries in recent times are eight times more likely to file for bankruptcy as those with none, something which is reflected by scoring formulas. 

On top of this, FICO is changing its scoring formula. This will see those with good scores should see their scores jump a little higher. Those already in financial distress could see their score fall. If you’re concerned, you can easily access a credit repair company near you to help you get your credit score back on track.

Can a Bank Pull my Credit Report Without my Permission?

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) has a strict limit on who can check your credit and under what circumstance. The law regulates credit reporting and ensures that only business entities with a specific, legitimate purpose, and not members of the general public, can check your credit without written permission.

Is AnnualCreditReport Safe?

AnnualCreditReport.com is the official website for free credit reports. However, be aware of other fraudulent sites that might try to appear to be annualcreditreport.com by using a similar url.

Is My Credit Clear After 7 Years?

While you will still need to repay any debts you owe after seven years, having a clean credit report will do wonders for your financial well-being. Note only the bad stuff disappears from your credit report after seven years. The positive information will remain on your credit report. If you want to start improving your credit score you could check out the most popular credit repair software.

All reviews, research, news and assessments of any kind on The Tokenist are compiled using a strict editorial review process by our editorial team. Neither our writers nor our editors receive direct compensation of any kind to publish information on TheTokenist.io. Our company, Tokenist Media LLC, is community supported and may receive a small commission when you purchase products or services through links on our website. Click here for a full list of our partners and an in-depth explanation on how we get paid.

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Credit Repair Companies

What is a Credit Repair Organization?

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A credit repair organization is a company that offers to repair your credit for a fee. These companies boost your credit score by cleaning up your credit reports by asking the bureaus to fix errors and remove erroneous charges. But, is a credit repair company essential for your credit’s health? Read on to find out.

Tips for Using a Credit Repair Organization

If you plan on using a company to help you clean up your credit reports, make sure to put some safety measures in place and find a reputable company such as Lexington Law.

Credit repair companies often get a bad reputation, but that doesn’t make all of them bad or unscrupulous. If you decide a credit repair company can help, there are a few things you should check out before you take the plunge:

  • Don’t sign a contract until you review it – You should always get a copy of the contract in writing before you sign. Review the fees the credit repair organization charges, look carefully at what they say they can do for you, and make sure you’re not locked into a long-term contract. If a company doesn’t let you have an agreement in writing or let you out of the agreement you’re not happy with, you should reconsider.
  • Research the company with the BBB – It’s a best practice to always look at Better Business Bureau reviews, and pay attention to consumer reviews as well. If the company has too many complaints, you should proceed with caution. Also, beware of organizations that don’t have any negative reviews. When researching, a good tip is to look at all of the middle-of-the-road comments first. You can also ask the company for information about satisfied customers.
  • Make sure the company is bonded – A bonded company has posted money to protect its customers from fraud, or in the event they go out of business. Some states require credit repair organizations to be bonded. Using a bonded company is no guarantee, but it gives you an added layer of protection should something happen.

Protecting You Through Law

Because of the reputation of these organizations, and the tendency of some services to use fraudulent methods including scamming consumers, the government put the Credit Repair Organizations Act (CROA) in place. The CROA is designed to protect consumers from dishonest companies. This law helps consumers be aware of their rights when using a credit repair company.

Under the CROA, a credit repair organization can’t legally:

  • Alter your identity, or advise you to do so – this includes applying for/using an employer identification number (EIN) to get a clean slate on your credit history.
  • Tell you to lie about your credit history, or lie on your behalf – this goes for both current and future creditors.
  • Lie about the services they can provide.
  • Ask you to pay for any service before it’s completed.

When you enter into business with a credit repair company, the CROA states that they must provide you with a contract and provide a three-day cancellation window. Only after this window passes can the company start the process.

Credit repair services are also not allowed to insist you sign any form which would waive your legal rights. If any organization disobeys these rules, you have the right to protect yourself by taking the company to court. This right extends for five years, either from the date the wrong occurred or the date you find out about it.

Save Money by Doing These Tasks Yourself

What is a Credit Repair Organization?It doesn’t take a credit repair organization to repair your credit. If you’re considering doing some of the same things they can, all it’s going to cost you is time.

For example, you can monitor your credit reports for free, check for problems, and write to the credit bureaus to fix these errors, or let them know if some of the items on your credit reports aren’t yours. You can also create a better credit profile by paying all your bills on time each month, and by not carrying high credit card balances.

One downfall to the process of doing this yourself is that you have to regularly follow-up with the credit bureaus to ensure your reports get fixed, and that can be very time consuming. Also, you may not have the expertise that a trained credit counselor has, which could be a disadvantage.

Are You Ready to Take the Plunge?

If your credit needs repairing, you should know that it’s something you can do yourself. In addition to fixing negative marks that show up on your credit reports, you can also improve your credit history by getting a car loan. This is an excellent way to make a positive impact on your credit.

Not only does an auto loan add a new line of installment credit to diversify your credit profile, making all your payments on time also helps to build a positive payment history. Payment history is the largest factor that contributes to your credit score.

If you fear you’re not eligible for a car loan because you’re looking into credit repair, think again. There are special finance dealerships across the country that have lenders ready to work with people who suffer from bad credit, no credit, and even bankruptcy. At Auto Credit Express, we can help point you in the right direction by matching you with a local dealer. Get the process started today by filling out our easy auto loan request form now.

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Credit Repair Companies

Latin Lawyer – Three firms in Mexican credit repair acquisition

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Garrigues (Mexico) has helped US finance companies Vulcan Capital and Freedom Financial Network purchase a minority stake in Mexican credit repair company Grupo Resuelve tu Deuda from Crédito Real.

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Credit Repair Companies

Free credit repair consultation for people in credit distress – Press Release

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Free credit repair consultation for people in credit distress

At a time when the number of people with negative credit listing has increased, Intel Credit Consultants is coming to the aid of the credit distressed individuals and business through offering free credit repair consultation.

With the rate of credit default reaching new levels, a credit repair company is offering individuals and business a free consultation. While announcing this credit repair assistance, the lead consultant at Intel Credit Consultants said this is meant to help individuals and businesses make informed credit decisions. “We are aware of the situation  occasioned by the pandemic and we would like people as well as businesses to come out strong , remove their negative information and improve their chances of getting credit to finance their activities,” said the company representative while urging those in need of credit repair services to register for free consultation.

Intel Credit Consultants relies in a pool of experienced credit repair professionals to help its clients. The team is reputed for its experience and high skills as well as dedication to provide assistance quickly and effectively. The company representative says that the team goes out of the way to ensure customer satisfaction and delivering the desired results.  He observes that the free consultation is a step towards providing a path that will streamline a customer credit path and open avenues where they can live comfortably without being bogged down by issues of negative listing.

“The importance of credit repair cannot be overemphasized, it can open many doors for you especially if you are considering buying a house, a new car, furnish your house, taking a loan among other financial decision. We are providing assistance that will help improve your credit score,” said the lead consultant while adding that they are a reputable firm, a choice of many people looking to repair their credit fast and at affordable rates.

While explaining how they operate, the company spokesperson said the first step is becoming a member through signing up. The new member is supposed to choose a plan where they analyze the available options. The credit repair company has a variety of programs that a member can choose from. Once a customer provides all the necessary information and documents, the company representative says they can now sit and see the progress. “On average our clients see an 85 point increase in their credit score in a period of one month,” said the representative while adding that they have received numerous testimonials from customers who are happy with their services. “We are happy to hear positive feedback from our customers, we are pleased to learn that we made a difference in their lives, providing an avenue where they can improve their financial standing. This is who we are, a credit repair company that makes a difference in people’s lives,” said the representative while reacting on the positive testimonial from the customers.

Intel Credit Consultants promises to continue offering credit repair assistance, encouraging those who are looking for services to take advantage of their free consultation through booking an appointment through their website: https://intelcreditconsultants.com/

About Intel Credit Consultants

Intel Credit Consultants is a US based black owned credit Repair Company. The company that puts its clients needs first making sure they are educated and well informed on every credit decision.

Media Contact
Company Name: Intel Credit Consultants
Contact Person: Media Relations
Email: Send Email
Phone: 866.990.7175
Country: United States
Website: https://intelcreditconsultants.com/



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