Ordering a Report
What are your creditors saying about you? Hopefully, only good things. But there is one way to know for sure. You must obtain a copy of your credit report and luckily, that’s easy to do.
Your first step is to contact one of the major credit reporting bureaus — that’s right, there’s more than one. But you don’t necessarily have to order a copy from all of them. So how do you decide which one gets your business? Here are a few good rules to follow.
- If you’ve been turned down for credit, you’ll receive a declination letter with the name of the credit bureau that provided information to the creditor. You can obtain your credit report from that agency free of charge within 60 days. Just send them a letter requesting a copy of your report (see the following sample letter) along with a copy of your denial letter.
- If you’re just curious as to what your credit report is saying about you, consumers in 13 western states can now receive a free credit report annually from each of the three credit reporting agencies, Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. Additional states will be included quarterly throughout the year:Midwestern states: March 1, 2005
Southern states: June 1, 2005
Eastern states: September 1, 2005
There are three ways to order your free credit reports:
1. Order online from the only authorized site, www.annualcreditreport.com
2. Call 877/322-8228
If you request a copy of your report from one agency and find that it contains incorrect or outdated information, it is a good idea to obtain reports from the other two agencies as well. This will allow you to compare the information and resolve any problems simultaneously.
You can contact each agency directly:
Equifax Credit Information Service
P.O. Box 105873, Atlanta, GA 30348
P.O. Box 2104, Allen, TX 75013-2104
P.O. Box 390, Springfield, PA 19064-0390
If you choose to order your credit report directly by mail, you can use the format of our Sample Credit Report Request to request a copy of your credit report.