Credit Reports

Your credit report should accurately represent your credit history. From the moment you first apply for a loan or a credit card, you likely have a credit history.

Credit-related transactions appear on your credit report, including your current debts, paid debts, and payment histories. Your credit report is compiled by three private companies: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. These companies sell your credit report to banks and other creditors so they can review your past credit history.

Your credit report includes:
  • A list of debts and a history of how you've paid them.
    This can include credit cards, car loans, and student loans.
  • Any bills referred to a collection agency.
    This can include phone and medical bills.
  • Public record information.
    This can include tax liens and bankruptcies.
  • Inquiries made about your creditworthiness.
    An inquiry is made when you apply for credit. Your credit report can also show if you were given credit based on the inquiry.

Adverse or derogatory credit information in your credit report is required to be deleted after 7 years (bankruptcy-related information is required to be deleted after 10 years). Your credit report is continuously updated, which is why you should always know what it looks like. In recent years, some unscrupulous creditors have not reported positive credit information on a timely basis. You want to make sure positive information is reflected accurately, so check your credit often.

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