In a world seemingly driven in all matters by credit reports, getting that report for nothing ought to be a good thing,
But the commercial entities beat the federal government to the web address freecreditreport.com.
And they also got a better ad agency that wrote catchy tunes promoting their product, under the guise of free credit report.
But freecreditreport.com provides you a free credit report only if you surrender personal information, wait for it to come by snail-mail and sign up for a monthly service billed to your credit card.
They bank on you not cancelling that subscription.
It’s not really free.
There is a free credit report
The three big credit reporting agencies do provide a no-strings attached credit report to everyone, once a year.
Unfortunately, the URL doesn’t mention free, and doesn’t come with a catchy, banjo driven jingle;
But it does provide simple, and free, access to your credit file.
The right to know
Federal law enacted in 2003 gives everyone the right to request a free credit report each year from each of the three national credit reporting agencies: Experian, Equifax, and Transunion.
For nothing (that is: free) you can examine your credit report once every four months, if you request your free report sequentially from the CRA’s.
Repeat after me: annualcreditreport.com.
What to do if you find errors
The Federal Trade Commission website walks you through how to challenge inaccurate information on your credit report. They’ve even included a sample dispute letter.
ConsumerHelpCentral.com sorts out your remedies if the CRA doesn’t correct the information.
Sing the chorus
Here’s the game plan:
- Click on www.annualcreditreport.com
- Order a copy of your report from one agency
- Look for errors and inaccuracies
- Challenge bad information
- Mark your calendar for 4 months to order a report from one of the other national CRA’s
Then, how about I offer a free subscription to BankruptcySoapbox to the best jingle submitted for ANNUALCREDITREPORT.COM.