There’s a good chance you’ve come across ads about how to get a free credit report. The Fair Credit Reporting Act requires that every individual has access to their free annual credit report every twelve months from all 3 credit rating reporting agencies: Experian, Equifax, and Transunion. You don’t need to purchase your simple credit report in order to see it. A new federal law also requires all commercial sites offering a free credit report to inform people there is only one authorized internet site that by law offers a free annual credit report called AnnualCreditReport.com. You’ll often find a disclaimer on these free credit report sites that explains these details. This federal law was passed because the government believed everyone ought to have access to a free annual credit report and have the opportunity to correct it and dispute any errors.
Another reason the federal government passed the law is mainly because there’s been an explosion in identity theft cases these past few years. It has become alot easier to obtain personal information on practically everyone online. It makes sense to check your free annual credit report to make sure you’re not a victim of identoty theft. You want to make sure no unauthorized accounts have been opened using your name or social security number.
So Is There Any Benefits Whatsoever With Credit Monitoring Or Identity Theft Services?
A resounding yes! For starters, the government only provides a free credit report once an year. But security and credit experts have often mentioned the need to check your credit reports at least twice per year. Some experts would say checking your reports 3 to 4 times an year would be a better idea. Another reason why these free trial offers for credit monitoring services are very popular is due to the fact that you’re able to see your credit scores for free. What you don’t get to see with your government annual credit report is your credit score. You end up having to purchase your credit scores individually from the 3 credit bureaus. But your credit score is a very important number. It’s your credit score and NOT your credit report that lenders and creditors use to make loan decisions and to decide on what your loan interest rates will be for your mortgage or auto loans. It can decide on whether you’d even get loan approval in the first place for home loans, auto loans, and credit cards. Your credit report is simply the raw background information that is used to come up with your score. You do want to obtain your credit report, but mostly to correct any errors so that your credit score will improve. Also, when you utilize these features that credit monitoring or identity theft services, you’re being alot more proactive. Why wait until you’ve already become a victim of identity theft? Why not take steps to avoid being one in the first place? But if you ever became a victim of identoity theft, they provide identity theft insurance as well as financial recovery services.
Seeing your free annual credit report once an year is the bare minimum of what you should be doing to check your credit. But checking your credit files more than once per year is what’s being recommended by most credit experts. However you decide to obtain your credit scores – whether you decide to purchase your credit scores individually from the three credit bureaus or decide to get them during the free trial period offered by a credit monitoring service – it’s important that you view it from all three bureaus. You will be quite surprised at the difference in your score numbers between the 3 bureaus.