Getting Your Credit Checked

You’ve worked so hard to be responsible with your finances: paying bills on time and not getting into too much debt. Even if you know you have done well, the credit check is just a little scary. The most challenging part is that most professionals, even the FICO people themselves, don’t give clear explanations of how to improve your credit score. What’s the combination? It’s not clear, but we are stuck with this rating system to judge our financial responsibility. If it doesn’t look right to you, please dissect that report and make any corrections that you can. Surprises are not fun on your credit report when buying a home. I highly recommend pre-qualification with a reputable lender to make sure you have a full understanding the health of your credit and how much home you can afford.

What is a credit report?

A detailed report of an individual’s credit history prepared by a credit bureau and used by a lender to determine a loan applicant’s creditworthiness, including:

1. Personal data (current and previous addresses, social security number, employment history)

2. Summary of credit history (number and type of accounts that are past-due or in good standing)

3. Detailed account information

4. Inquiries into applicant’s credit history (number and type of inquiries into applicant’s credit report)

5. Details of any accounts turned over to credit agency (such as information about liens, wage garnishments via federal, state or county records)

6. Information on how to dispute any of the above information