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What Your Credit Score Says About Your Credit History

Mar 24, 2008
You hear a lot on the news and in advertisements about your credit score and how to get credit reports for free. Of course, nobody gives something away for free. There is always some way that they are looking to make money off of you.

You don't have to answer one of these ads to get your credit report. You can write directly to one (or all) of the credit reporting agencies. These agencies are Equifax, Experian and Transunion. You can check with them at any time. It may cost you a few dollars but at least you won't have some third party company giving your credit information to others that are also trying to get you to purchase something...or worse.

You can get your report for free if you have been turned down for a loan or any kind of credit.

The companies that are advertising their services don't give you your credit score...just the credit report. No, they aren't lying to you...just not telling you the whole truth. If you want to get your credit score too, you will have to pay them for it. They are banking on the fact that you won't know how to get this information for yourself.

The credit report that you receive from the official agencies do give you your credit score with them. It also gives you a lot of other very important information about your credit. It shows which accounts you currently have open, a detailed history of all credit accounts you have opened and tells you who has checked on your credit within the past year.

Having people check your credit score too often will often flag it and lower your score. When you see this happening, contact the credit reporting agency (or agencies) and ask them to block that company.

Your credit score is represented by a score between 300 and 850. Naturally, the higher your credit score is the better you will look when you are trying to get a loan or other credit.

Review your credit report thoroughly when you get it. There are a lot of things that you might not be aware of. One is that you may find some credit accounts that are open that you do not use. It is recommended that you close them.

If your credit history is poor, you will need to take steps to improve it. Here are some things that you can do:

1. Never, ever be late paying a bill. Late payments are reported to the credit bureaus almost immediately and gives you a poor payment history.

2. Don't check on your credit score too often. This could indicate to the bureaus that you are looking for a loan and causes your score to go down.

3. Don't just make minimum payments on your credit accounts. This, also, lowers your credit score.

4. Do close all of the credit card accounts that you don't need.

5. Don't open any new accounts. If you do open a new account, be sure that you close the account that you are replacing with it.

You will hear, mostly by those companies that are advertising their services, that you need to check your credit reports often. But, don't let them scare you into checking them so often that it downgrades your credit score. A couple times a year or maybe once a quarter is all that is necessary. By keeping on top of your credit, you will be able to get that loan when you really need it.
About the Author
Go to http://FixingPoorCredit.com for more information on getting your credit under control.
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