Credit Reports

A credit report is a collection of information obtained from your creditors reflecting the extent of your credit and payment history. It can be thought of as your “credit report card,” “credit reputation,” or “credit resume.” Lenders use this information to determine if they will loan you money and at what rate. The report reflects your credit worthiness.

In addition to history, which contains information from banks, merchants and creditors, it will show an individual’s current credit status, reflecting their credit worthiness. Amongst other things, creditors are looking to see if the individual has a history of repaying debts in a timely manner.

Several companies issue credit reports, but the three largest are the well-known credit reporting agencies (aka credit bureaus),
Trans Union (, 800-888-4213),
Equifax (, 800-685-1111)
and Experian (, 888-397-3742).

It is recommended that you check your credit report on a regular basis to ensure accuracy and to correct any errors. Federal law entitles you to a free annual credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies. Simply go to:, call 877-322-8228 or download the request form from the site and mail the completed form to Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281.

A credit score is typically obtained from information contained in one’s credit report. Check the topic “credit scores” to determine important variables.