So you have decided to obtain a copy of your credit report. Perhaps you want to see where you stand before applying for a loan or insurance. Maybe you want to be aware of your credit score, and take steps to improve your rating.
Perhaps you want to check your details, and make sure that they are correct and up-to-date, and an accurate reflection of your credit history. Whatever the reason, there are many places to obtain a credit report.
If money is not an option, you can obtain a copy of your credit report from any credit bureau at any time, as often as you want during the year. If, however, you don’t fancy paying for a copy of your credit report, there is only one place you can go to obtain it for free.
But there are many offers on the Internet for free credit reports, can’t I just get it from one of them?
You can, but there are strings attached to many “free” credit report offers online. Many sites require you to sign up to free trials, that turn into paid-for services after a period of time.
There is a legally mandated website that guarantees consumers one free copy of their credit report from the main three nationwide credit bureaus each year.
If you would prefer a hard copy of your credit report you have two options. You can complete the Annual Credit Report Request Form and mail it to: Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281.
You can also call the toll free number. They will send you your credit report usually within two weeks. It can take longer if it is a busy period, but they will let you know if it is a peak time when you contact them.
It is your legal right to obtain a free copy of your personal credit report from each company once a year. You can get them all at once, or separately at different times throughout the year to more closely monitor your credit situation. If you choose not to use the legally mandated service, be careful not to sign yourself up to anything that has on-going costs, for your free report may turn out to be very expensive indeed.