How to Obtain All Three Credit Reports

by HomeLoan.com
A credit report is a file of personal information such as name, address and employer, as well as a record of whether you pay your debt obligations on time. In the United States, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion maintain these files. Thanks to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, each consumer can see his or her credit report upon request. Each year a consumer can get one report from each agency for free. In addition, consumers can order additional reports from one or more of the major credit bureaus upon request for a nominal fee.

Things You'll Need

  • Social Security number

Step 1

Visit annualcreditreport.com in References below to get free copies of your credit reports. You will need to provide your full name, address, date of birth, and Social Security number. Usually the electronic system will also ask two or more multiple choice questions to further verify your identity. These questions could be a former address, name of a relative or spouse, or current or past lender.

Step 2

Visit the websites for each of the three credit reporting agencies if you already obtained free copies of your reports in the past year. Links to all three agencies are provided in Resources below. Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion will require you to go through brief identity verification just like annualcreditreport.com. Additionally, you will need to pay a nominal fee (which as of 2009 could be anywhere from $8 to $13 depending on report requested) using a credit or debit card.

Step 3

Call each credit bureau if you do not have a credit or debit card but need to obtain copies of your reports. They will tell you what identifying documents you must send (usually a driver's license copy), as well as the proper address and payment amount for your state. Typically such payments are only accepted by money order. The appropriate telephone numbers are Equifax, (800) 685-1111; Experian, (888) 397-3742; TransUnion, (800) 888-4213.

Step 4

Review your credit report to ensure there are not any errors. If there are, visit the appropriate website or follow the credit report's instructions to start the dispute process.

Tips and Warnings

  • Though 3-in-1 credit reports are offered online, it is usually better to obtain the appropriate report from each individual credit reporting agency. This ensures you have the most recently updated file from each credit bureau.


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