Knowing what is on your credit report can help to keep your personal information safe, give you a chance to correct inaccuracies, and save you money on interest rates when you apply for a home loan. With the wide availability of free or low cost credit reports online, there is no reason to spend a lot of money to find out how credit worthy you really are.
Obtain a free credit report when you sign up for special services
If you are interested in signing up for credit monitoring or similar credit check services, take advantage of a company that offers a free credit report when you sign up for their program. If you are interested in a credit monitoring or counseling program, look for one that offers a free credit report instead of paying for this information.
Go straight to the source
According to the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, everyone is entitled to receive a free copy of their credit report from each of the three nationwide credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, once every 12 months. You can individually request a copy from each bureau or you can look for online companies that offer a free centralized request form that lets you fill out one form and receive your credit report from all three agencies.
Save money later by not being too thrifty now
While free online credit sites abound on the internet, it isn't always as free as it sounds. Always thoroughly research any company you are about to request a free credit report from. Some are nothing more than fronts for identity theft scams. Ironically a consumer thinks they are getting a credit report to safeguard their credit, when in truth they are giving away valuable information to identity thieves. While it might seem wonderful to get a credit report for nothing, it won't seem so wonderful if you have to go through the headache of cleaning up your credit report or if you aren't able to secure a loan because of fraudulent information on your report.