Pulling your credit report online can be the first step towards fixing less-than-perfect credit or for folks just checking to see if any erroneous information appears on their credit reports.
The first step that will be required at the online credit report websites is to create a user profile and verify your identity.
In order to verify your identity, you’ll be required to answer some security questions. Some examples of the types of information they might ask for old addresses (they provide the street name, you’ll be asked to supply the street address number and zip code), former employers (they’ll furnish the dates you worked and you’ll need to supply the employer’s name).
Another way they have to allow you to prove your identity is by entering account numbers for different accounts. They will pick the debts so try and have all of your bills/statements available just in case they ask for this type of information.
IMPORTANT – You’ll be required to create a login name and password for some of the credit agencies. It’s very important that you save that login information. Many people fill it out and then lose it. You’ll need to have this information each time you pull these free reports (which can be done once every year) so make certain that you keep it in a place you won’t misplace it.
You might want to consider paying for the option to obtain your credit score. You’re getting a free credit report that does not affect you in a negative manner. It’s worth thinking about if you can afford it.
There are many places online that claim to give you a free credit report but most of these websites have hidden charges such as forcing you to join a monthly (paid) program or something similar.
The best place to pull your free credit report is http://www.annualcreditreport.com. At this website you can pull the versions from all three credit reporting agencies for free.
If you find information that is not correct, you might want to consider filing a dispute with the credit bureau reporting that incorrect information.
That is a direct link to a report from the FTC called “Building a Better Credit Report”. It also has a sample letter you can use for the dispute process. Once you go over your credit report and find any inaccuracies, send your dispute letters out to the credit reporting agency that shows the inaccurate information.
Here are the addresses to use for filing disputes for the three major credit reporting agencies:
CREDIT REPORTING AGENCIES
P.O. BOX 740241
ATLANTA, GA 30374
P.O. BOX 2002
ALLEN, TX 75013
P.O. BOX 1000
CHESTER, PA 19022