How to Find One’s Credit Report and Credit Score Inexpensively and Safely

Whenever you make a significant financial move today that requires financial assistance, it’s often accompanied by a check of your credit report and often a retrieval of your credit score. Lenders (and, quite frequently, other agencies like insurance companies) use this information to help determine a customized offer for you, so it’s quite useful to have an idea of your credit score and to make sure that your credit report is clean, particularly in terms of incorrect statements that can hurt you.

The problem is that there’s no obviously clear way to acquire this information. Credit reports are managed by three credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion), and these companies make money by selling your credit report and your credit score to lenders. They also hope to make money by selling this information to you, too.

Even worse, there are sharks in the water out there. Programs like freecreditreport.com seek to trick you into signing up for subscriptions to stuff you likely will never use in exchange for your credit report.

Here are the best ways I’ve found to find out your credit report and credit score. Please, if you know of better sources than these, leave a note in the comments.

Getting Your Credit Report

Your credit report is just a listing of all of the accounts and debts that you have and whether you’ve been paying them on time. When you go to get a loan, lenders will use this to see whether or not you’re a reliable person who can be counted on to repay debts. The more reliable you look, the better the rates.

You can get your credit report for free, no questions asked, at annualcreditreport.com. This is a service offered by the FTC that allows you one free download of your credit report each year from each agency (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion). Since most of the time the three reports are the same, you can effectively grab your credit report for free every four months.

Do not use other services to get your report – you’ll end up being forced to sign up for services and pay fees that you don’t have to pay. The worst offender here is the heavily advertised freecreditreport.com.

Once you have your report, you should read it very carefully to make sure it’s accurate. If you find something that isn’t, start calling. Get ahold of both the credit bureau and the organization that put the false info on your credit report. False information on your credit report does nothing but hurt you and you should seek to get rid of it as soon as possible.

Getting Your Credit Score

Unfortunately, a service like annualcreditreport.com doesn’t exist for one’s credit score. The exact method for calculating credit scores are actually considered to be a trade secret, held by the Fair Isaac Corporation. That’s why credit scores in the United States are often called FICO scores. Thus, you can find out all of the information that makes up your score, but you can’t find the score itself.

The cheapest option is to not find out your specific score. If you’ve checked your credit reports at annualcreditreport.com, you know what your credit report looks like. You can use that information, along with knowledge of your personal finances, and use a FICO score estimator to get a pretty strong estimate of your credit score. I tried this tool and found that it predicted a small range of potential scores – my real score was in fact within that range.

For some, though, an exact number is necessary, and you’ll likely have to pay for that. When I was in the process of shopping for my house loan, I looked at several services and finally used myFICO to get my credit score. They give you several options – the best one, for the long haul, is to get your FICO score from the credit bureau with the worst credit report (you checked them at annualcreditreport.com, right?) for a one time fee of $16. That’s the method I used to find my “worst” score – and it wasn’t bad at all.

There are other options (like getting your FICO score from all three bureaus at once at myFICO, or going to each credit bureau individually), but they’re more expensive. No matter what, though, you should definitely avoid any subscription services – credit monitoring is nice, but you can get the same effect for free by going to annualcreditreport.com regularly.

Now That I Have This Info…

Once you’ve downloaded your credit report, ensured that it’s clean, and figured out your credit score, you can use that information to get realistic assessments of the type of loans you can get. This tool provides a good estimate of the benefits of a strong credit score. With this information, you can make up your own mind about whether you can afford a big purchase right now – or if you need to focus on improving your credit right now.

Remember the biggest rule of thumb: don’t ever sign up for a recurring service unless you’re 100% sure you want it. For credit scores and credit reports, given the strong free and one-time services available, I don’t believe there’s any reason for the average person to sign up for credit monitoring subscriptions. Keep that cash in your pocket instead.

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  1. chef says:

    Questionable strategy here, but I got my credit score for free when applying for pre-approval for a mortgage. It was more of a fringe benefit, so I don’t know that I would recommend it, but it does give you your score.

  2. Amy says:

    I know you said to watch out for subscriptions and whatnot, but I’ve used credit card companies several times (Citibank, Bank of America among others) to get their 30 day free trial.

    Why I like it — they have a “credit score analyzer” where you can play with “what-if” scenarios (e.g. what if I paid off this one first? Does it help to focus on dropping some to $0 first or get them all under 15%?) Watch out, it can become an obsessive game ;)

    What to watch out for — your 30 day limit. Plan to call four weeks from when you originally signed up for it, and just keep refusing their attempts to get you to stay on board.

    It seems to work okay for me… any danger of doing it that way?

  3. Rebecca says:

    I guess my only worry is about the whole “identity theft” idea… I’m about a year away from purchasing a house and I want to keep an eye on my credit score, for fear of having that put off.

    Am I being too obsessive about this?

  4. adam says:

    I get a monthly free credit score as a benifit from one of my credit cards. One of the only reasons that I keep it (besides the fact that it is my oldest card). Not sure if this is still offered very often.

  5. You can get a one time FICO score for $15 or $20 if you’re planning a large purchase and really feel that you need to know your exact score.

    My score was given to me free when I was planning on buying a vehicle for my wife. Both the bank and State Farm gave it to me while sitting right there at their desks.

  6. Anne says:

    I just checked out that credit score estimator to see how accurate it is. I have this old credit card that I never use because the rewards suck, but I keep the account open because they provide me with my credit score for free each month as part of my account profile. Nifty service. Anyway, that credit score estimator did a pretty good job. My score is actually a bit higher than the top of the range it gave me, but I suppose that it doesn’t overestimate my score is a good thing. Make my real score sort of a bonus surprise ;)

  7. !wanda says:

    In California, you can get your credit report for free for 60 days after you’ve been turned down for insurance, housing, a loan, or a job because of your credit. You can also get your credit report for free if an agency with your personal information might have done something wrong with it.

  8. Frugal Dad says:

    I didn’t know about the score estimating tool, good scoop there. It was actually pretty close to my real score (last time I checked). MyFICO does a fine job of reporting the score, and I like their “best scenario” simulators that let you predict your score based on several different courses of action.

  9. Miles says:

    I get free access to my credit score online from my Washington Mutual credit card. They also will email me if my score changes more than 20 points in a 3 month period. They track your credit score monthly so you can see it change (hopefully for the better) over time. Not a reason to sign up for their credit card, but a good reason to keep it, paid off monthly of course.

  10. mouse says:

    this site leads you to many others –
    its good to be able to get it free multiple times
    http://www.consumercompare.org/
    i’ve used myfico free and creditchecktotal (which gives you all 3, but you have to remember to cancel in 7 days)
    i read of other dodgy ways to get it, like applying at prosper.com
    and don’t forget to ask whoever ran your credit last

  11. John says:

    One tip for increasing your credit score is to dispute any negative information on your credit report (even if it’s true). I had a late payment for a utility bill once when I was in college and I had a small medical collection against me because I had moved recently and I never got the bill. The negative information only showed up on 2 of the credit bureau reports and only 1 of them had both negative accounts. I disputed the negative information by going to the bureau’s websites and filling out a short form. Within a week, I got responses back from both bureaus that they had removed the information, no questions asked. And the best part was that when I got a new credit score, my score shot up 80 points! I’m not sure if it was because they were small amounts on small accounts, but it’s definitely worth a try to dispute any negative information — it can really boost your score!

  12. CBus says:

    Before going car shopping, I went to my local credit union to see how much (they said) I could ‘afford,’ what credit tier I have obtained, and what interest rates were available. They pulled my credit score from one of the 3 bureaus. I then found a car in my budget…yada yada yada…happily ever after. But if I had ended up not buying a car, am I guilty of stealing my credit score?

    This similar to the reading books in bookstore argument. Is it being too frugal to “obtain financing qualification” as opposed to paying for your credit score? You still have a mortgage, savings, checking, etc. with the bank and pay the bank for (some of) those services.

    Is there a dollar amount or service that would make the ‘complimentary credit score’ guilt free. Say if the bank serviced your mortgage?

  13. Heidi says:

    I get my FICO score for free every month via my WaMu (formerly Providian) credit card.

    It’s a cool feature – WaMu calls it a “Credit Profile”: they track my FICO score monthly and give me a 12-month history (even though the account is at zero balance). I just log in and look anytime.

  14. Aryn says:

    I have a Wamu Card too and it looks like the score rotates between the three bureaus. I’ve read from several sources that the scores you get from the individual credit unions are not necessarily the same ones your lender sees, but the scores you buy from MyFico are the same ones the lender sees. I also heard a representative of FICO saying that they would be happy to give the scores to us for free (they make their money by selling the scores to lenders) – but the credit bureaus refuse!

  15. greg says:

    What is the deal with the wamu card?
    https://online.wamu.com/personal/credit_card/platinum_mastercard/default.asp
    You cannot find any details on the card?
    How bad is it to add a credit card. then never use it. If you currently have 2 cards, with no balances.

    How scary is it to use the myfico site?
    http://www.myfico.com/Products/Products.aspx
    Will they leak your info out?
    I am guessing FICO Standard for $16 is what someone would want? Just to get your score. And no Monitoring?

  16. Minimum Wage says:

    I was talked into applying for a mortgage by one of the zillions of mortgage brokers/lenders calling me last year. (He insisted he could get me a loan; I knew better but figured I had little to lose and free credit reports to gain.

    I was right about not being financeable, but they gave me a free copy of all three reports, WITH three different scores.

    Since I have had zero credit activity since, I haven’t gotten a free report lately.

  17. Scott says:

    This post came at an opportune time. My wife and I are kicking around the idea of purchasing our first house. The last time I checked there was about a 150 point difference between our credit scores because she had some problems paying some credit card bills about two years ago. I cleaned that up after we got married but her credit score still reflects those mistakes. My question is, when lenders are evaluating your credit scores how do they blend them between couples with different scores? Do they come up with a composite score for you both or just use one or the other? She’s been in grad school for the past two years and has had no substantial income so maybe I should just apply for a loan in my name. Any thoughts?

  18. Susan says:

    Aside from just needing to know your score and cleaning up any less than desirable marks, there’s also another good reason to look – you could be -owed- money.

    My husband and I just checked ours about a week ago and discovered he had some account back in his hometown he never closed. There’s a few hundred bucks in there waiting for us.

    http://www.theinnovativetraveler.com

  19. kim says:

    We monitor our credit frequently. Not because we’re concerned about theft(we’re pretty careful), but because my husband is a Jr. and for some reason his Dad’s (less than stellar) credit history has been know to pop up on our credit. This has happened at least four times in the past seven years. We were told that since my husband had is parents address as a previous address and his name is the same that this is a possibility. It seems to happen whenever his Dad misses payments or goes seriously over the limit. It’s very aggravating!

  20. Eric says:

    to Cbus:

    While banks will pull your credit history/ report if you are considering getting a loan through them, its not necessarily prudent to avail yourself of this “free” feature. This is because every hard pull on your credit lowers your score. When a bank pulls your credit report to check your financials they do a hard pull on your info which means they get in depth information on you( as opposed to a soft pull which is what credit card marketers do) . When you get too many of these in a short time it looks bad since you could be preparing to spend beyond your means.

  21. Roger says:

    The forum at http://www.creditboards.com has a thread where folks will post discounts available at myFICO. If you’re needing a score, I would recommend checking first for codes that can be used. I’ve seen codes for up to 25% off posted!

  22. daveb says:

    I have always heard about the hard pulls which always seemed a little contradictory to me. What if I want several banks to compete on my mortgage? That is where I am right now. I fear having another bank pull my credit because I have already had it pulled by my primary bank. Do they take that into account? or will each new pull lower my score?

  23. Jennifer says:

    It bears repeating that your credit records/score will NOT be negatively impacted from you pulling your own credit with the annualcreditreport.com site. You are entitled to the information (on a limited basis) and should not be penalized for exercising that right.

    Your credit score is a commodity and as such, you will be enticed to “purchase” whenever possible. “Free” is better. Your score is really relative as each of the “Big 3″ uses slightly different algorithms to get there. No one gives you free information unless they are forced by some legal entity to do so.

  24. Manny says:

    Just to clarify, errors on a credit report could be different social security numbers reported (differs by 1 digit) or different names (differs by a letter or 1 letter is missing) – does this classify?

  25. Jason L says:

    I relied heavily on annualcreditreport.com when I lived in the States. I am now stationed on a U.S. military base in Japan, and can no longer use the service.

    I imagine it is a protection against Nigerian and Chinese scammers/hackers attacking the website for nefarious purposes, however it cuts a lot of legit people out, too.

    There are many Americans living abroad. Even trying to access from a U.S. government computer is blocked (during my lunch time).

  26. Jeni says:

    I put a fraud alert on my credit last week because of a possible identity theft incident. The next day I went to annualcreditreport.com and tried to run my credit reports, but they weren’t “available” from any of the credit bureaus.

    I assume I have to take off the fraud alert, and then try it again? Just wondering if anyone knows about this.

  27. tom says:

    I use to be able to get a free credit report threw my state goverment (ohio) website for free once a year. Not enough people where using it so I think they did away with it because the link is gone none, but check your state goverment website and see if they offer it.

  28. EMF says:

    I spread my free credit reports out, getting one every 4 months. That way I have a better chance of finding out sooner if there’s a problem.

    If your married, coordinate with your spouse and have him/her on the same schedule, but getting reports from a particular agency 6 months away from when you do it. That way you’ll have a sample every two months.

  29. CBus says:

    @Eric

    Very good point. Seeking financing results in a “hard pull.” Too many hard pulls in a short time certainly would be disadvantageous.

  30. EMF says:

    To Jason
    Look on the FAQ section of the annualcreditreport website. There is a link to a downloadable form to mail in. I imagine that they’d send your credit report to an APO.

  31. Tobias says:

    As Jason mentioned, you can get the three free reports yearly here:

    https://www.annualcreditreport.com/cra/index.jsp

    I paid $7.95 for my credit score, but FYI they are using a new score, and not FICO. While my FICO score was in the 740 range, my new score is much lower (Well, its around 760, but it’s a much larger range and so it says I have poor to average credit). Two of the notes they provided was that I didn’t use enough of the credit I had (I only use an Amazon rewards card and pay it off every time I use it), and I didn’t have high enough real estate balances (Even though I now have mortgages on two properties that are very close to the 28.2% limit).

    I was always glad to see my FICO score gradually going up after some (many) poor choices I made when I was younger, but whatever this new score is seems like it measures some wonky stuff, and it’s sending my credit in the opposite direction.

  32. Mitchell says:

    My understanding is that Equifax is the only credit bureau that reports a true FICO score.(Check out Clark Howard’s Web site for info)

    When you get your free report from Equifax there is an option to buy the credit score for $6 or $8. I’ve seen a similar option with the other bureaus. But be aware that the other bureaus have come up with a variety of scores that are NOT FICO scores, and can NOT be compared with FICO. Be sure you get your FICO score, that is still the most common one used.

    Many companies will tell you your score when you apply for a loan through them. That’s free. You may want to ask your bank or insurance agent for the info even if you aren’t applying for a loan. They may do it as a service.

    Remember as well that the scores of spouses will be different. I don’t know if the scores get closer as the marriage lasts. I’d suggest that you research that. You can often apply for loans using the credit info of just the spouse with the best profile.

  33. BigRed says:

    Thanks Trent! I hadn’t looked at mine since we bought our house in 1999, and was pleasantly surpised (FICO is 860! Wow!).

    I was surprised as well at the number of credit card accounts that had been opened (probably to get some 10% promotional discount) and used once, and never closed. So, I spent an hour yesterday on the phone with credit card reps closing the accounts that I didn’t want anymore. I also managed to do a quick balance transfer over to a 0% (the card companies are DESPERATE to keep your business) for 12 months.

    I wouldn’t have done this without this posting, so thanks again! You’re helping keep us financially healthy!

  34. Karen says:

    Rather than call or even email it is important to write to correct errors on your credit report. Include documentation with your letter and keep copies of your correspondence. Derogatory information like a nonpayment is supposed to be removed from a report after 7 years. A bankruptcy can stay on the report for 10 years but then also must be removed. A credit reporting agency has 30 days to verify information you have reported as inaccurate and correct it. Once a credit report is corrected the information is supposed to permanently stay off of your report. If the credit reporting agency is making your hair gray because it keeps making mistakes which do you harm, consulting a consumer attorney may help.

    It’s not just in California that someone gets a free copy of their credit report when they’re turned down for credit. It’s everywhere in the U.S.

    Finally, your credit score is what it is. I have never thought getting a credit score was a good value. Focus on ensuring your credit report is accurate and on conducting your household with fiscal integrity and the credit score will take care of itself.

  35. Caeli says:

    I haven’t checked back at the Annual Credit Report website in a few years, but my experience with it in the two years that I did use it was not good. I was only ever able to get the score from Equifax. The other two got you through entering all the information then either had a bad link that wouldn’t do anything when you clicked on it, or said it was experiencing technical difficulties. The same thing happened with my husband’s information, in two different years, on two different computers. I figured the companies were just steamed over having to provide their business for free, so they made it impossible to actually make use of the free information. It’s good to know that this is not the case, but now I’m wondering why I’m having such bad luck!

    BTW, does anyone have any advice for getting rid of marks on your credit that don’t belong there? I have a hard time getting financing because of an emergency room visit a month before I turned 19. My birthday was the cutoff for my parents insurance, but they didn’t pay the bill even though the service was covered. My parents were supposed to take care of it, and three years later I got a call from a collection agency wanting me to settle my $1000 medical bill for $300! I called the hospital and the insurance company and left several messages, but no one ever called me back. I finally just paid the $300, but the mark is still on my credit and it shouldn’t be there and I really have no idea what to do about it. Also my husband has quite a bit of identity theft on his credit report from his ex-girlfriend using his social security number to buy everything from jewelry to cell phones to cars. He even has evictions on his credit from places he never even lived! Most of these credit companies and stuff are only open during business hours, though, and we’re both at work and don’t have time to sit on the phone for hours arguing with these people!!

  36. Valerie says:

    I some states like Georgia, you can get 2 copies per year of your credit report for free from each of the credit bereau so that’s a total of 6 free credit reports per year.

  37. laura k says:

    I have used annualcreditreport.com for the past few years. It has definitely improved since the first time I used it. One thing I don’t like about it is that you have to wait until the day after the anniversary date to order your next year’s report. As a Massachusetts resident, I am entitled to a free credit report each calendar year from each agency. When I ordered them from the agencies directly, it seemed I did not have to wait until after the anniversary date as long as the calendar year was different.

    The main reason the anniversary date bothers me is that each year I review my finances sometime between my birthday (mid-November) and the end of the calendar year, to make sure that everything is still okay and so that I can re-balance effective January 1. A couple years ago I must have put it off, because now annualcreditreport.com won’t give me new reports until mid-December. My birthday triggers the “time to review your finances” switch, and sometimes I want to get started on that right away. I may go back to pulling reports from each agency individually just so that I can do that.

    Re: credit score, annualcreditreport.com usually has a “2-weeks’ free credit monitoring” deal that will give you your credit score immediately. You can cancel any time in that 2-week window and not be charged. Unfortunately you need to provide a credit card number to sign up, and you need to call to cancel, but you can do it all at once (and should, so that you don’t forget to cancel).

    While some may call that “cheating” or “sneaky,” I don’t see any reason why you should have to pay to find out personal information about yourself. It would be like your doctor telling you that he had the results of your cholesterol test but wouldn’t tell you unless you gave him an additional $12.95!

    Sometimes lenders will also let you know your score. They may not offer it, but all you have to do is ask, and some will tell you.

  38. Jeremy says:

    You say that the average person probably has no reason to need credit monitoring, but I bet the thousands of people who had their identity stolen last year wish they had it before hand.

    That’s sort of like saying there is no need for GAP insurance on a car. You never think you need it until it’s too late.

  39. Mo-Town says:

    Big Red:

    I’m pretty sure the highest possible FICO score is 850, and that’s almost impossible to obtain. If something is showing your FICO score as 860, it probably isn’t a true FICO score.

  40. pam says:

    @ Eric
    It’s true that hard pulls temporarily lower your credit score. But when shopping for an auto loan or a mortgage, you have a two week window to shop around. So if you go to multiple mortgage lenders in a two week period, only the first inquiry will impact your score.

  41. Allison says:

    @Scott:

    I work for a sub-prime mortgage lender, and I can tell you that my company scores married couples using the primary borrower’s credit scores (primary borr being the one making the most money). The co-borrower’s scores are reviewed, but only because we have a minimum co-borrower score of 500 to even qualify for the loan.

    If your wife is in school and has no source of income, putting her on the loan would probably hurt your loan amount potential. For joint ownership purposes, you can still have her on the title for the house, which is separate from the actual loan. The big negative effect of her not being on the actual mortgage is that her credit scores wouldn’t go up as you pay off the loan, but you could always refinance once she’s out of school and has had a job for at least two years.

    I’m not saying that this is advice that rings true at every lending institution–just how your situation would play out at my particular company.

  42. Jane says:

    How Ironic I just put a fraud alert on my credit score as someone at my alma matter Georgetown University left an external hard drive with 38,000 past and present students SSNs on it sitting in ther office unsecured over the Xmas holiday. In doing so I found out when you place a fraud alert they will give you your credit report for free. As to why some woman in the office of stundent affairs still had my SSN on a computer more than 8 years after I left that’s a different question

  43. BigRed says:

    Mo-Town–I think you are correct–I got my report off the TransUnion site (linked above), and the scores on there ranged from 501 to 990, so the scale is “off”, compared to the numbers I’ve heard discussed. In the fine print, it references using the VantageScore credit scoring formula (most likely proprietary).

    I will check with one of the other two credit reporting agencies. I’m interested in the score (cause I’m kind of geeky that way), but more importantly, I got to take care of closing a bunch of orphan accounts that were inactive for over 5 (in some cases, almost 10) years, but were still open. Yikes.

    Thanks for the note–I was really unsure about what all this meant. Trent (and his great readership!) are helping us improve our financial situation, and I am delighted!

  44. Scott says:

    I did not read everyones take on this. But did I miss something? Everyone/Everything says,your score,my score etc. Hence Mine! It’s mine? So these 3 firms take other people work or whatever, come up with some number crunching system and charge you for information they get free and other’s decide whether you can or cant? I’m calling bullshit on all of it. Shit, most of it is wrong anyways, wrong information, wrong addresses, wrong names etc.WRONG WRONG WRONG. Try to get a hold of one these places to try to clean up their mistakes (mind you, on YOUR!, i repeat YOUR information) no chance. It’s a lets see how many hoops you can jump through. These company’s are a scam. So until people wake up and demand their own information for free, you get everything that’s coming to you. SUCKERS!

  45. Diane says:

    I also have a Washington Mutual credit card, specifically because they have free credit monitering (including your credit score). I don’t think it would hurt to open the account, use it once to activate it, and then just cut it up once you pay it off. Free credit monitering, very little hassle.

    Also (and I may be wrong) I think if you have ANY Washington Mutual account (savings account, checking, etc) they offer free credit montering as long as you manage the account online.

  46. G.E. Miller says:

    I wrote a similar article back on January 23, titled “Smart Planning will get you 3 Free Credit Reports per Year.” You can view the article here: http://20somethingfinance.com/blog/2008/01/23/what-is-a-credit-report-and-how-do-i-get-mine-for-free/

    Unless you’re going to be buying a house within a year or so, checking your FICO score regularly is like checking your mutual funds on a daily basis. It’s kind of fun, but it doesn’t do you any good in the long run. FICO scores are mostly garbage. After selling my first house and apply for a mortgage on a second, my FICO actually dropped and I had no new credit accounts, increased credit limits on my existing accounts, and no bad debt whatsoever.

  47. Bob says:

    I run a small housing counseling agency (www.raahc.org) and we are able to “soft” pull credit reports for free with scores (doesn’t include Equifax). We use it to work with people who want to buy a house but aren’t sure if they qualify. To find a housing counseling agency in your area, go to http://www.hud.gov and click on the link to housing counselors. I won’t vouch for the quality of all, but we use a special program developed by Freddie Mac that not only allows us to make the pull, but it also lets us know if someone is ready to apply for a mortgage successfully. If they aren’t, we are able to look at specific issues that need to be addressed to prepare them to see a mortgage lender. If you’re looking to buy a home, a good housing counselor can get you a LOT of benefits.

    BTW, the scoring range is different for each of the credit bureaus, so I believe (from memory here) that the 850 max was correct. Transunion scores can get into the 900′s, but the other two max out at 850 and 820 IIRC, making 850 the max since it would be the middle score.

  48. Nicole says:

    I have a question about credit reports/credit score, though I’m not sure it’ll still get answered here since it’s an old post. It’s possible that I have some student loans that I always pay on time that have never shown up on my credit reports. I ran the credit score calculator including and not including the loans and it seems to turn out better with the loans not included. Is this one of those things I shouldn’t push to have put on my credit report? (I’m wondering if my school might have done this on purpose.)

  49. Shane says:

    I used to throw out all the papers I had because I used to think that it is a garbage and will do nothing instead makes the house look untidy. I got my annual credit report last year and tell you what it was very bad with all negative remarks even after paying all the bills on time. I contacted a credit bureau to discuss the matter and they asked me so many documents which I had thrown out not even leaving a piece. After that incident I realized how important is credit report and all the documents.

  50. Brittany says:

    CreditKarma.com, friends. I’ve posted it in comments before and e-mailed Trent about it to no response… it really is a fantastic service that provides free (yes, completely free) credit score reporting, along with analyses of what you can do to improve your score, how it stacks up against others, etc. I love it.

    I know I sound like a spambot or someone who works the company… but I’m not. It’s just awesome and I think more financially-literate people should know about it!

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