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How do I check my dang credit report?

RWBRWB Icrontian
edited Jul 2005 in The Pub
I just applied online for a CC and was denied. I'd like to know why... Equifax or whatever is who they used to check. I am sure it has something to do with my student loans, but I have never been late on them.

I am supposed to be able to check for free, but I am looking on the Equifax website and find NO WAY of checking it freely. Everything it shows costs me money.

What am I supposed to do? I have never checked it before, I want to make sure it's ok.
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Comments

  • shwaipshwaip bluffin' with my muffin Icrontian
    edited Sep 2012
    <a href="http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/credit/cre01.shtm">FTC site for free credit reports</a>

    Here is more info on the Fair Credit Reporting Act:

    <a href="http://www.creditreport.org/additional-resources/the-fair-credit-reporting-act/">FCRA on creditreport.org</a>
  • RWBRWB Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    I managed to find it when my mom came home... I see nothing worrysome in my account at all.... :scratch:

    Maybe I am at my credit limit... it just wasn't much in the first place. I have like 2 things on there, and I have yet to begin paying off either becuase I don't need to yet.

    Good side... no one can get a CC in my name even if they stole my SS#
    Bad side... That includes me ;D

    Dunno what my credit rating is though, but it can't be bad. Never owned a CC in my life, never owed any money, always payed my bills on time with money I earned and never on credit. All I have is a couple student loans in small amounts each, plus one in my parents name which is pretty damned big but I am easily paying that one off as is.

    But I really don't know why I couldn't get that Bestbuy CC, I wanted to get a damned laptop that I know Gnomewizard has and likes that's pretty damned cheap!!!!!!!!! ARG!
  • NomadNomad A Small Piece of Hell Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    Actually, not owning a credit card could significantly lower your score particularly if you miss a payment on something else.
  • RWBRWB Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    Nomad wrote:
    Actually, not owning a credit card could significantly lower your score particularly if you miss a payment on something else.
    Kinda hard to get a CC if no one lets you have one... I'm thinking of getting that Capitol One card I got in the mail a few weeks ago. But I am unsure how good it is.

    Is that Amazon Card any good to get? Anyone?
  • edited Jul 2005
    The only way I could get my first credit card was through my credit union. It's a "starter card", which means has a high rate (15%) and only a $500 limit, but it's fine for building credit.
  • ClutchClutch North Carolina New
    edited Jul 2005
    My first credit card was with First Financial Bank. www.1fbusa.com I got so many offers when I turned 18, but was always denied. 1FB was the only company to give me a chance. Might want to try them out if you are looking to get a card.
  • pseudonympseudonym Michigan Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    Nomad wrote:
    Actually, not owning a credit card could significantly lower your score particularly if you miss a payment on something else.

    Very correct. I don't have one, but yet I have a very good job and financial assets. My credit score=D. Friends with jobs as waiters but have done a good job on their credit cards get MUCH higher scores than me basically because I have no history, so no one trusts me....... I don't trust me either.
  • edited Jul 2005
    A good first step in getting a MC or Visa in your name is to first get you a gas CC from a major chain, if you can (at least it was back in the day when I was young, decades ago ;D ). Use it and pay it off every month and then see if your credit rating goes up.
  • oCoMiKoCoMiK Oswego, IL
    edited Jul 2005
    RWB wrote:
    I am supposed to be able to check for free, but I am looking on the Equifax website and find NO WAY of checking it freely. Everything it shows costs me money.

    What am I supposed to do? I have never checked it before, I want to make sure it's ok.

    RWB,

    Please e-mail me your full name, DOB, SS#, current street address and I'll make sure <strike>you</strike> we get a credit card...

    But seriously, two of the options mentioned are the most viable. Gas or department store credit - Purchase something and then make payments over a period of time, preferably a year.

    Or get a secured major credit card and demonstrate a payment history. Lenders just want to see that you have the ability to pay them back and that they can make $$$$ off of you.

    Just this weekend we paid off all of our cc's, which is a very nice feeling. By chance I happened to be taking a look at our finances one day and noticed that one of my cards had an interest rate of almost 29%.

    Now this didn't make much sense but I had a feeling it must be some kind of default rate. Sure enough it was! At some point we were late on a payment (and I mean late as in payment was not received by the due date) and this kicked in some default rate, which was almost double the original.

    This pretty much got me looking at everything else and I realized that a good portion of me and my wife's salary was going towards maintaining our CC debt. As I saw it it was a form of financial slavery (self induced of course) but something I no longer felt compelled to want to deal with.

    Good luck RWB with building your credit but beware the pitfalls that MAY go along with it.
  • dragonV8dragonV8 not here much New
    edited Jul 2005
    It's the same the world over. My son could not get credit either when he was young.

    I just went and bought a computer for myself, put it in his name and his credit rating went up. At least it was nothing too expensive and no probs for him with me paying. :)

    As he just started to work for himself as a contractor, he claimed the computer as a deduction. :D

    Now that was a win/win situation. ;)
  • Options
    edited Jul 2005
    dragonV8 wrote:
    As he just started to work for himself as a contractor, he claimed the computer as a deduction. :D

    Don't think we didn't see that.
  • shwaipshwaip bluffin' with my muffin Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    you have no jurisdiction in australia. So :P
  • dragonV8dragonV8 not here much New
    edited Jul 2005
    shwaip wrote:
    you have no jurisdiction in australia. So :P

    We did use it to do his accounts just to keep it legal. :D

    Innocent till proven guilty. ;D ;D
  • SpacePenguinSpacePenguin Space Member
    edited Jul 2005
    shwaip wrote:
    you have no jurisdiction in australia. So :P

    We do.
  • shwaipshwaip bluffin' with my muffin Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    Unfortunately, you registered a second account, which is against the rules of the forum. ;)
  • profdlpprofdlp The Holy City Of Westlake, Ohio
    edited Jul 2005
    shwaip wrote:
    Unfortunately, you registered a second account...
    It might even be as many as four... :cool:

    picketylicketybooboo ;D
  • GHoosdumGHoosdum Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    RWB - Everything said above is completely correct. Except that the IRS is watching dragonV8, that was wrong.

    Anyway, your best bets are either credit union or gas card (preferably one that is also a regular CC). Those were my first and second accounts I ever got... the credit union account was the easiest to get, by far. You can also get department store accounts pretty easily. Regular credit cards (Visa/MC/Amex/Disc) show up differently on your credit report than department store accounts do, and I've heard that it's good to have both. I have not verified this, however (I have no department store accounts). Regardless of what you choose, you do not want to choose a card with an annual fee. There is so much competition out there right now between creditors that annual fees are essentially traps for the unwise.

    One popular myth that is completely false is that you need to carry a balance on your card in order to get credit scores to increase. Not only is this untrue, but you don't even need to use a card in order to get your credit score increased. Even if you get a card and it sits unused in a safe, the credit card company is reporting the card as "Paid As Agreed" or "Paid" on time every month, which over time adds to your credit score and looks good on your credit report. This is exactly what the company will report if you do carry a balance and pay interest, and it does the same thing to your credit score, except without interest being charged to you. The longer your account is open, the higher your score goes. So don't close accounts.

    Best bet right now for rewards is the Citibank Dividend Platinum Select card, either the regular or student version if you are still a student (this card gives 5% back on groceries, gas, and drugstore purchases). You can literally MAKE MONEY each month from cards like this, if you pay your balance in full before the due date. The card company charges you no interest, but pays you a percentage of your purchases. How could it get any better than that?

    Another thing that is not very common knowledge is that a big part of what goes into your score is your credit utilization. This is calculated by looking at how much your Credit Line (ie the max) on your card is used... Your current balance / your max = your credit utilization. The lower ranges of credit utilization (<25% or lower) yields a higher score. Using more than 40% - 50% of your credit line actually decreases your score.

    Remember, when dealing with your credit, you are your worst enemy. If you are careless or irresponsible, you will damage your score either through mismanagement of your own credit, or allowing somebody else to do the same thing (ie, be careful with your SSN and never cosign any loan or credit account).

    In summary:
    1. Build your credit history by keeping card accounts open. Even if you have to take unfavorable terms at first (ie high interest rates or low limits) these can usually be negotiated away later on - don't close the account, but try to get a higher credit line and/or lower interest rate after a few years.
    2. Keep your credit utilization low.
    3. Be careful with how you treat your credit and pay your full balance every month if you can.

    I learned all of these lessons the hard way. I broke #1 by closing several accounts (Circuit City and Best Buy cards) after only a year, when I was done with the 0% interest offer. Not only would my credit look better with longer history on these cards, but I also broke rule #2 at the same time. My overall credit utilization went up when I closed out cards that had a 0 balance, because their maxes no longer counted toward my max credit line total. And I broke #3 in college by buying way too many computer parts on my credit card. I just finished paying off all of my principal and interest back in February, and I vowed never to do it again. Hopefully you won't have to learn the hard way! ;)

    Oh, and you can check your 3 credit reports for free once a year by going to www.annualcreditreport.com and going through their steps. Don't misspell it, since there are a lot of fake sites out there that look the same trying to steal your info!

    //edit: Oh, and I forgot to mention this above, but I can overclaok my cat! :werr: :rolleyes: :zombie: :zombie: :zombie: :hair: :hair: :hair: :eek2: :tongue2: :whatever:
  • ThraxThrax Professional Shill, Watch Slut, Mumble Hivemind Drone Austin, TX Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    shwaip wrote:
    Unfortunately, you registered a second account, which is against the rules of the forum. ;)

    THIRD. HO NOEZ BAN ME IRL thx.
  • LincLinc Bard Detroit, MI Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    Thrax wrote:
    THIRD. HO NOEZ BAN ME IRL thx.
    Rob's histrionics aside, it isn't against the rules. They only say if we ban a person it counts for all names they may try to use. That said, please don't make it a habit. :) Now back to the thread at hand...
  • shwaipshwaip bluffin' with my muffin Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    Oh. Some forums it is. I guess I just assumed it was the same here. I never actually read the rules. I just hope "you have to read the rules" isn't in the rules.
  • mmonninmmonnin Centreville, VA
    edited Jul 2005
    Thrax, contribute to the thread or do not post at all.
  • PreacherPreacher Potomac, MD Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    RWB,
    if you were refused credit, then by law you should get a credit report free from the agency that was used to check your credit.
  • profdlpprofdlp The Holy City Of Westlake, Ohio
    edited Jul 2005
    Listen to Preacher. That would be the best way to find out the details of this particular situation.
    shwaip wrote:

    To elaborate on that, check this out.

    There are three credit report agencies and you are allowed to get one free report from each every year. What this means is that if you spread them out you can get a free report every four months. :thumbsup:
  • MrBillMrBill Missouri Member
    edited Jul 2005
    RWB wrote:
    Dunno what my credit rating is though, but it can't be bad. Never owned a CC in my life, never owed any money, always payed my bills on time with money I earned and never on credit.
    I don't think your problem is BAD credit, it's sounds like you were denied because you don't have ENOUGH credit.

    I had the same issue 25 years ago. I finally got a credit card through my bank, had my father-in-law co-sign a car loan and that started me on the road to building credit.

    Now, I can buy more on credit than I can pay for...LOL!! But, I don't and won't. Be careful how you use your credit. Credit cards should be treated as "convenience cards". Don't charge won't you can't pay off completely each month.

    Another way, is to get a pre-paid credit card. I have never had one, but I hear this is another way to build credit. You basically pay in advance, then you can make purchases against it.
  • ThraxThrax Professional Shill, Watch Slut, Mumble Hivemind Drone Austin, TX Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    mmonnin wrote:
    Thrax, contribute to the thread or do not post at all.

    Yeah, because <i>that's</i> a rule at Short-Media. :rolleyes:
  • GargGarg Purveyor of Lincoln Nightmares New York City?! Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    mmonnin wrote:
    Thrax, contribute to the thread or do not post at all.
    Thrax wrote:
    Yeah, because <i>that's</i> a rule at Short-Media. :rolleyes:
    I'm pretty sure silly tangents are the rule, rather than the exception to one. :D
  • LeonardoLeonardo Wake up and smell the glaciers Eagle River, Alaska Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    I seem to remember that the topic of this thread was securing credit. Let's keep it there, please. :)
  • PreacherPreacher Potomac, MD Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    I just want to say that I support Thrax. I'm confident enough to admit that I, like he, am afflicted with the scourge of literary discussion, a dreaded mental disease known as "digression." Those of us that have lived our lives "topically challenged" have overcome insurmountable obstacles and other stuff......how about that Tour de France win #7?


    We're kinda dancing around semantics here, because no credit is the same as bad credit until you establish a good payment record. I would highly recommend that RWB get a credit report (preferably from the credit bureau that was used to deny him) and confirm whether he was denied for lack of info or there is something else hidden or in error on his record.
  • GHoosdumGHoosdum Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    I'm pretty sure he already did get a credit report, and found nothing bad, but not much in the way of history, either.
  • RWBRWB Icrontian
    edited Jul 2005
    Yeah I did find everything I needed except my credit rating.... but everything was fine as I mentioned in post #3

    I just applied for a Capitol One card, 12.9% APR. I have no idea what that means though except Annual Percentage Rate or something.... which I don't know exactly what that means :scratch:

    What sucks is the $200 limit it has right now becuase theys till have to confirm things until I can get the $2000 limit appearently..... I thought I could go ahead and buy that laptop which I could use right about now. I don't mind paying more for it in the long run, I just need it asap :shakehead
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