Free Government Credit Report

Free Government Credit Report

Many people confuse the rules of the Free Trade Commission (FTC) with the idea that you are entitled to a free credit report government ( every twelve months. The truth is the FTC made a law that the credit reporting agencies must provide you with a free copy of your credit report as it stands with them once every twelve months for free. Because the information in that report so affects what you can do in the financial world it is only fair for you to know exactly what is on it. In addition, the only way you can correct errors is to know what you are dealing with. If you have no access to the report you cannot get things corrected and you could be denied credit for false information.

Why Does it Need to be Free?

There are a few reasons it is made for free. One is that it is information about you and you should have access to it. The credit reporting agencies were making a fortune from people as they were charging each and every time you asked for one. If you were trying to get something corrected on the report you were paying multiple times until you found out it was corrected. Another is that it helps keep the credit reporting agencies honest. Not that they would put things on your report that were untrue, but mis-information is easy to come by. Now that people can easily check what is on their report and they have to correct things that are wrong, they spend a little more time making sure the information is right in the first place.

When Should I Check my Free Credit Report?

You don’t typically need to check your credit report more than once per year. If you know what is on there and you are aware of what you are doing with your money, your score is unlikely to change by much. You want to check your credit report if you are planning on doing big things like buying a house. In these cases you will want to start the process a few months ahead of when you get started. This gives you time to fix anything bad on your credit report that is not accurate before the mortgage company or underwriter looks up your number. This will help you secure the best possible interest rate and save you hundreds of thousands of dollars over time.

Why Does the FTC Care?

The FTC was set up to protect the consumer. While they have many jobs, one job is to police predatory lending. This is when lenders take advantage of your needs and charge you way too much for loaning you money. Most people think of this type of lending when considering loan sharks or other below the table types of lending establishments. These lenders charge too much for their services and the loan sharks often come with a threat of violence. The FTC is there to keep all the lending services in line. To check in and make sure interest rates are fair and that they are treating all people the same. As a commission it is one of the most comprehensive commissions that is all about public safety and your best interests.

Getting your free credit report helps to keep you in the loop when it comes to your financial situation and future. The last thing you want is to start the process of buying a house or borrowing money only to find out you don’t qualify because you didn’t know what is on your credit report. It is also a great way for you to keep on top of potential identity theft. You can sign up for a service that will give you a credit score daily. It doesn’t count as “looking into your credit” and the cost of such a service is usually just a few dollars a month. The more you know about how you look to lenders the more prepared you can be for the rates you are offered and what you can look forward to when you need to borrow money or start a new credit card.