How Do I Check for Errors in My Credit Score?

How Do I Check for Errors in My Credit Score?

 

To help get you started, here is a quick overview of what you need to know when checking your credit report for possible errors.    

How Do I Check for Errors in My Credit Report?

In order to check your credit report for errors, you first need to obtain a copy of your credit report. Based on the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), you are allowed to request a free copy of your credit report from each of the three consumer credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) once every 12 months. Fortunately, obtaining a copy of your free credit report is extremely easy, all you have to do is visit AnnualCreditReport.com to request your credit report. 

Once you have a copy of your credit report, look for common errors and mistakes such as:

  • Incorrect Personal Information
  • Accounts That Don't Belong to You (This can indicate Identity theft.)
  • Duplicate Accounts
  • Information or Accounts from an Ex-Spouse
  • Inaccurate Payment History (If there is a record of late or missed payments that is not accurate, this can lower your credit score.)
  • Outdated Information (Such as negative accounts over seven years old.)

If you suspect that there is fraudulent activity on your credit report, you should consider placing credit freezes on your three credit reports immediately in order to prevent further damage until you can report the error(s). 

 

What Can I Do to Protect My Credit Report?

Unfortunately, certain errors that occur on your credit reports such as incorrect personal information or inaccurate payment history cannot be avoided. This is why it is important that you check your credit report at least once a year, as this can help you to catch mistakes and have them corrected as soon as possible after they occur. 

However, there are a few simple steps that you can take to protect yourself from identity theft such as:

  • Check All of Your Financial Accounts Frequently: This includes checking your banking and credit cards frequently, as this can help you to catch and report fraud as soon as it occurs. 
  • Enroll in a Credit Monitoring Service
  • Always Use Strong Passwords Online
  • Do Not Repeat Passwords
  • Be Careful When Giving Out Personal Information

 

How Do I Report an Error?

If you notice an error on your credit report, it is critical that you contact the credit bureau that you got the report from as soon as possible to request a correction. If the error is present on all three credit reports, then you will need to submit a separate request to each credit bureau. 

Before you contact the credit bureau in question, it is important that you collect any documents that support the error (such as credit card statements showing that an account has been paid off) as they may request this documentation. 

A representative from the credit bureau should then be able to help walk you through the process of correcting the errors on your credit report. 


Staying on top of your credit report is critical, as mistakes on your credit history can negatively affect you the next time you go to apply for a loan or credit card. 

If you need help or guidance regarding your credit, we would love to assist you in any way we can. Speak to an expert and contact us today.

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