As we are all at home more these days watching the economy continue its downward trend, it can be easy to spend a lot of time worrying about your financial future. One thing that can help you make progress towards securing your personal finances is requesting a free credit report. Through the Federal Trade Commission, the country’s three main creditors offer free credit reports that individuals can order once a year by filing out an online or mail-in form. While looking at your credit report may be nerve wrecking or worrisome here are the top four reasons why you should request a free report today no matter what the status of your finances are.
Catch Identity Theft Early
With more of our shopping being done online while we stay home and social distance there are increased opportunities for scam artists to get a hold of our credit card and banking information. This increased exposure has led to a jump in the number of identity theft reports since the shut down began. By accessing your credit score you would be able to spot suspicious behavior related to your identity that maybe the biproduct of identity theft. The sooner you spot this activity and report it the less damage can be done to your credit score. This makes it easier and faster to recover from identity theft and work towards rebuilding your credit score.
Make Sure the Information is Accurate
Beyond identity theft there are many other types of errors that your credit report can include. In over 20 years of filing bankruptcy cases, our law firm has seen mistakes on credit reports ranging from missing mortgages to mistaking that our client was deceased! According to a study done by the Brookings Institution, “More than one in five consumers have a “potentially material error” in their credit file that makes them look riskier than they are”. If you check your credit score today, you can discover these discrepancies and file a petition to have them removed before they cause long term damage to your financial stability and security.
Know What Employers See Before the Interview
With many Americans out of work right now and looking for new jobs, more of us will be sending out resumes and attending interviews soon. For many job applications employers will request permission to check your credit score before inviting you for an interview. A credit score can signal many things to a perspective employer such as how responsible you are with your personal finances. This can set the tone for the remainder of the hiring process. By knowing your credit score you can have a better idea of the image potential employers are seeing when you apply. It can also help you be prepared for any questions an employer might ask during an interview to avoid being caught off guard.
Learn About Your Options
If you have recently lost your job or are facing increased financial burden it can be daunting to find the best way out of the situation. Whether you need cash to tide you over till you find another job or a way to delay payments while you get back on your feet, your credit score is a pivotal element in understanding what your options are going forward. Knowing your credit score can help you determine if you are eligible for certain types of loans and what your options are for refinancing your debt during hard times.
So now that you have hopefully decided to access a free credit report here are the steps to submitting a request in about five minutes.
- Go to www.annualcreditreport.com
- Click on “Request your credit reports”
- Fill out the questionnaire
- Check your credit scores
Or you can mail in your request for a credit score by printing out and completing the form below.
Once the form is complete you can mail it to the address below to receive your credit report by mail.
Annual Credit Report Request Service
P.O. Box 105281