A good friend of mine recently asked me what was a credit report and how he can get an actual free credit report. My friend has a doctorate. He is a smart and experienced guy.
If he was asking me this question, he may not be the only one with doubts.So I contacted the people of My Fico to have a chat about scores and credit reports.
Perhaps the first thing to know is that a Credit Score and Credit Report, are two entirely-different things. Your credit report shows you the raw data, while your credit score is the translation of these data into a three-digit number, using one of the dozens of credit scoring models.
The representative of My Fico compared this to prepare a meal. The credit report is its raw material, the scoring model is your prescription, and the three-digit number as you get credit score is the finished dish.
The three major credit reporting agencies are: Experian, Equifax and TransUnion. Each one of these credit bureaus maintains a separate credit report for individuals. Every time you see your credit score it comes from a report by one of these agencies. No combined results it’s based on data from all three.
It is advisable to request your credit report from each agency once a year, to see your credit. This also gives you the opportunity to review and compare your credit reports for errors. It may be a surprise that you could find a different score from the three agencies, and this is due to differences (or errors) between your reports. Continue reading Actual free credit reports: