The Real Deal: Checking Your Credit Report/Score
Updated: Wednesday, March 20 2013, 01:56 PM EDT
Christmas credit card bills have started to come due and if you went overboard
with the gifts this year, chances are you may be starting to regret it. What you bought then and what you buy now all
impacts your credit history but most of us don't check our credit report and/or
credit score nearly as often as we should.
Last time I looked
at my credit report was probably two years ago says Paul Coch of Albany. Ive never actually seen mine, ever, Pat
Loya tells CBS6. Its essential
information that could mean the difference between cash or credit, walking or
driving or even renting a home versus owning one. Whats listed on your credit report...your
payment history, the number of accounts you have, how much of your available
credit you're actually using, all factor into your credit score.
You can get a copy of
your credit report, once a year for free, from each of the three credit
reporting agencies by going to www.annualcreditreport.com. When it comes to your credit score, you'll
have to pay one of the agencies to calculate it which normally costs about
$15. A score above 700 is considered very
good, above 720 is considered excellent.
But since all lenders
do not report to all agencies, the score may be slightly different depending on
who you ask. It depends on which credit
report you're looking at versus which report the lender is looking at and then
the lender will also have their own internal mechanism for determining the
potential risk for lending to a person, says Dan Pecan who is a credit counselor
with Clearpoint Credit Counseling Solutions.
When you need a loan,
the key is to shop around. Your credit
may get you a much better rate at one place then it does at another because
they may factor that credit score in differently, says Pecan. And if you get told no, don't just leave it
at that, if you're denied for credit, you want to ask the lender what credit
scoring method they were using and what that score meant to them, he