We all know that the higher the credit score, the better, and if we don’t pay our bills, it has a negative impact. But, do we actually know what our credit reports consists of?
Each credit bureau’s setup is a little different, but they all have basically the same information.
All of the information below, can be found at the three main credit bureaus; Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.
Your credit report is made up of four categories: Personal Information, Credit information, Inquiries, and Public Record Information. Below is a break down of each category.
This has all of your basic information. This is where they see your name, date of birth, all of your addresses (Past and present), telephone numbers (past and present) and all employers. This is also where your social security number is listed. It does NOT have anything regarding your religion, medical records or any past legal problems.
Every detail, of every loan, credit card or debt is listed here, in detail. It has the date the account was opened, the detailed activity of the account, the balance and monthly payments. It pinpoints both the positive and negative credit information. In general, medical bills and utilities are not reflected, unless they have been turned over to a collection agency.
This shows every inquiry into your credit report. Each inquiry has potential of having a negative impact on your credit report. Each inquiry will stay on your credit report for two years, but only the first year will actually show a negative result. As a way to protect yourself, and your information, always go through the list of inquiries, and confirm that only the businesses/people you’ve given permission to, have accessed your credit. It is illegal!
Public Record Information
This is where information on your public record is kept. If you have any judgments, settlements, liens…It’s all there. This is what often lingers the longest, on your credit report.
Each month, any and all of the financial institutes, collection agencies, and creditors that you are associated with, report your activities. Did you make the payment? Was it late? They are only required to report to one of the three, but often they report to all three.
Now that you know what is contained in your credit report, it is important to correct any incorrect information, and report any unauthorized inquiries, to the credit bureaus.
A few little mistakes can have a BIG impact!