Free Credit Report *Official*
The Official Free Credit Report Site
I’m sure just about everyone has seen the credit report commercials all over the internet and television. Many of these sites require payment information to get this report except for Annualcreditreport.com. This is THE OFFICIAL free credit report site, that pulls your credit history from Experion, TransUnion, and Equifax. Keep in mind that this does NOT have your Beacon Score number.
A credit score (or beacon score) is pulled from the three above companies. Equifax seems to be the one that most people associate with a credit history, but all of these weigh in on the factors of your score. Many times a credit score inquiry pulls information from all three of these institutions and the lender will take the middle score. So while, say TransUnion, gives you a 750 credit score, the other two (Experion and Equifax) may be 740 and/or 730, which will ultimately result in a 740 beacon score. This is commonly practiced but not always the case.
Buying real estate will most likely result in a credit check. Unfortunately, most companies will not allow you to share the same credit report to shop loan rates. Each lender will order a credit report and each of these will be displayed on your free credit report inquiry.
I’ve always been told that having a credit report inquiry several times in a short period of time may hurt your Beacon Score. I’ve also heard that if you keep your inquiries limited to one type of lender(such as only a real estate lender or only vehicle lender) then if won’t affect your score. To be honest, I don’t know how they determine the scores but the best bet is to keep your inquiries to a minimum.
If you want to clean your credit so that you can get a higher loan amount, closing inactive accounts should free-up monthly obligations and increase the amount used for your future purchase. I’ve been told that the lender will subtract your total monthly minimum payments (on your open credit cards) from your desired loan amount. So if you have 6 credit cards with a $25 minimum monthly payment you are reducing your desired loan amount by $150 per month. So, if you aren’t using 4 of these cards very often... you should probably close them. The contact information will also be shown on your credit report so that you have a direct line to cancel that card.
For detailed information you can visit any of the sites linked from www.annualcreditreport.com for answers. Also, keep in mind that you can only do this once a year so be prepared to print your results.