There are many commercials and ads offering Free Credit Reports. The problem is most require you to signup for some type of credit protection service or charge you for looking at your own credit report. As an aside you can request that your name be removed from nationwide consumer credit reporting company lists for unsolicited credit and insurance offers. Just call: 1–888–5OPTOUT (1–888–567–8688)
It is very important to regularly look at your credit report. You may find errors that need to be corrected or even you have been a victim of identity theft. Reading it can help with understanding what you may be doing that is hurting your credit rating. That can greatly effect the interest rate you pay for mortgages, car loans, leases, credit cards and anything else that includes some type of financing.
Fortunately the government passed a law a few years back that requires each of the three credit reporting agencies: Equifax, TransUnion & Experian, to give each citizen one report every 12 months at no cost. No credit card or payment of any type is needed. The official GOVERNMENT RUN (Federal Trade Commission) website is: http://www.annualcreditreport.com/ When you request your Free credit report, the agencies are allowed to offer additional services for added cost. You are NOT required to purchase anything additional and we do not recommend anything they offer. Simply do not check any of those services.
We do not recommend requesting reports for all three agencies at the same time. A better way is to request a report from a single agency, spaced four months apart. This will allow you at no cost to check your credit report every three months. If you request from all three at once, you will not be allowed another report from any agency for another year. So if you (for instance) request a report from Equifax in January, TransUnion in May, Experian in September, then the following January you can receive a new report from Equifax. Normally, most information from each agency will be duplicated. The only time it might be beneficial to get more than one is if you find a major error on a report, although you should wait at least 30 days before requesting from the second agency to allow time for the erroneous information to be duplicated as you will not know from which agency it originated from.
Remember, the only official FEDERAL GOVERNMENT RUN (Federal Trade Commission) website is: http://www.annualcreditreport.com/
NOTE: If you live in Colorado, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Vermont & Puerto Rico, you are also eligible through state law to receive a free credit report from each in addition to the federal freebies. That is six reports per year if you live in one of those states! Three from Federal and three from your state. It is a different process for the state reports as they must be obtained directly through the credit reporting agencies as follows:
Equifax: Visit www.Equifax.com/FCRA. After filling out the name, address and Social Security number fields, check “Free State Credit File” under the “Reason for Credit File Request” header.
Experian: You must make a request by calling (866) 200-6020 to confirm your eligibility and to request their extra free credit report via snail mail. The automated phone system uses the caller’s area code to identify their location and then provides options based on where the person is calling from.
TransUnion: Visit TransUnion’s Personal Credit Report page . On that page, at the bottom click the box for “I am eligible that says: “Your state offers a free or reduced price Personal Credit Report” ; select your state and then you will need to create an account. Or if you are positive you are eligible you can go directly to the Account Creation/Login page.
If you find an error on your credit report, you will need to contact the reporting agency directly that provided the report. Do not report an error if you have not verified it exists in that agencies report.