How to Read a Credit Report, What is on it, and what does it mean?
Credit reports contain a wealth of information about your financial history and current debt, but it can appear overwhelming. It indicates your active loans, or credit accounts and how you pay them, and any delinquencies.
If you are going to be reading through your credit report for the first time, find a nice quiet place so you can concentrate and take a moment to yourself. Expect to find the following on your report.
1. Personal Information. Name, address, employment.
2. Account History. It will offer Company Name, Account Number, Account Type, Terms of Repayment, Date Opened, High Credit (the highest amount ever charged on the credit card), Credit Limit or Loan Amount. Balance, Past Due Amount, Payment History, and Date of Last Creditor Update.
3. Public Records. This would include any information like tax liens, bankruptcies, judgements, state and county court records, and over-due child support (in some states).
4. Credit Inquiries. This section lists all parties who have accessed your credit report within the past two years. While your complete version of your credit report indicates every inquiry. Lenders get a modified version that only shows the “hard” inquiries. Hard inquiries would include any credit approval application.
Okay, so deciphering the meaning of your actual score is a little tricky in itself. All lending institutions have variations of what they find acceptable in terms of your actual score. In my experience, the following are fairly accurate.
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