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Credit Reports

You will eventually build up enough credit history that it will appear on a credit report. Credit reports are maintained by the three major credit bureaus. Activity on credit cards, store charge accounts, student loans and other types of credit will appear on a credit report. Activities include your payment history, account balances, new credit, canceled credit, loan defaults, types of credit, and name and address changes.

Other information on a credit report include your marital status, birth date, Social Security number, and public records including bankruptcy filings, tax liens and any court action that has been taken against you for unpaid bills. Credit reports cannot include information such as your race, religion, health status, and political affiliation.

To see an example of a credit report, click here.

Use credit responsibly as your credit report will document any late payments on your credit accounts.

Your credit score is calculated by a mathematical equation that evaluates many types of information that are on your credit report. The credit score identifies your level of future credit risk. Lenders use your credit score to lower their risk based on the report information. The higher the score, the lower the risk to lend you money.

You may request a copy of your credit report by contacting each of the three major credit bureaus. There may be a cost for the request, however, a new law will eventually allow every consumer to receive one free copy of their credit report each year.

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