Understanding your credit report can play a major role in maintaining your financial health. This report not only provides lenders with the ability to perform a risk assessment when offering a new loan but can also serve as a way for entities to check a person’s identity.
A person’s credit report becomes a factor in their lives more often than they may believe. Credit reports come into play when opening a new credit card, applying to rent an apartment, or even to take on a new job. As a result, consumers should be aware of what the report discloses about their financial state.
With this in mind, people are often unaware of how often they should check their credit reports.
Check a Credit Report Before Making a Major Purchase or Life Change
The most crucial time to check a credit report is before attempting to make a major purchase that may result in a lender running a credit check. This can allow a consumer to understand their chances of receiving a loan and at what interest rate the lender may offer. It is far better to understand these concepts before going through an often-intrusive loan process.
It may also be helpful to perform this check before making major decisions about one’s life. Many landlords and employers perform a credit check to determine the overall trustworthiness of taking on a new tenant or employee. People should be hesitant to make these changes if it is doubtful that they will be able to make a proper adjustment.
Check Your Credit Score as a Part of Your Routine
A person’s credit score is not just something that becomes an issue during life’s major events. People’s credit score may change significantly at any time, and these changes can take their effects without people realizing it.
As a result, it benefits all consumers to remain aware of what information is in their credit reports at all times. All three credit reporting agencies offer a free, full credit report once a year free of charge. This can be an opportunity to double-check personally-identifying information and discover any errors that may lead to a credit report dispute.
Additionally, multiple online services offer free credit tracking with unlimited access. While these services are not as detailed as the formal credit reports that come from the credit reporting agencies, they can provide a credit score and track how that score has changed over time. It may be worth checking these scores once a month to obtain a warning against any sudden changes.
Knowing How Often You Should Review Your Credit Report is Essential to Proper Financial Literacy
Understanding your credit report can have major financial benefits. At the very least, knowing your score can help you to make important financial decisions concerning loans. On a deeper level, performing a full analysis of this report can detect errors that you may be able to correct with the credit reporting companies.
Of course, it is only possible to obtain this knowledge if you review your credit report. Our legal team recommends taking advantage of the free, yearly credit reports that all credit reporting agencies provide to every consumer. It is also worthwhile to register with a credit score monitoring service. Many of these services are free, and they can alert you to any sudden fluctuations in your credit score. Through a combination of regular monitoring and annual examinations, you can work towards maintaining a healthy credit history. Speak to an experienced attorney to discover how often to check your credit reports.