The Cereal City Real Estate Connection: Ways to Get Your Credit Report

Ways to Get Your Credit Report

A frequent question I often get asked by prospective home buyers is ‘How do I get my credit report?'  I decided that I would put some information together on ways to get your credit report.  There are actually several ways to get youWays To Get Your Credit Reportr credit report, and most all of them are free. 

Usually someone takes an interest in getting their credit report after they have been denied credit.  What some people do not know is that when you receive that letter in the mail denying you credit, you are entitled to by law to be able to get a copy of your credit report from the company denying you credit.  Merely follow the instructions they provide on the denial letter and write them back a letter requesting the credit report they used to deny you credit, and they will send it to you.

There are three credit bureaus, andAnnual Credit Report Request Form each have a separate compilation of credit information on you.  In 2003, Congress passed the ‘Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act' which provided residents of all US states to be able to get their credit report for free every 12 months, starting September 2005.  This website is:

If you do not have a computer, you can call 1-877-322-8228 and the credit bureaus will mail your reports to you within 15 days.  You can also fill out an ‘Annual Credit Report Request Form' which I have pictured here in this blog, and you can get a copy of this in a PDF version on the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) website link, here

If you have already pulled your credit report within a 12 month period, and need to pull it again, you will need to pay the individual credit bureaus for a report.  Per the FTC they can charge no more than $9.50 per report, although they charge more for the actual credit score.  If you want to contact the individual credit bureaus directly, here is their information:



Equifax Credit Information Services

P.O. Box 740241

Atlanta, GA 30374




P.O. Box 2000

Chester, PA 19022




P.O. Box 2104

Allen, TX 75013



Battle Creek Real Estate & Battle Creek Homes for SaleIf you do not want to pay separately and deal with each credit bureau, but get a complete report of all three you can also go get your full FICO (Stands for ‘Fair Isaac and Company')on the website: and they charge a flat fee of $45 for all three reports.  If you order them individually from the credit bureaus with their additional credit score fees, it comes to $41.  So sometimes it is easier to go to FICO directly and get the full package of three. 

So there are the different ways to get your credit report.  As a Realtor in Battle Creek, Michigan I am always working with people who need help with understanding credit.  I hope you have found this useful!  As you can see, there are alot of ways to get your credit report.  Some require money, but you can get your own report for free every twelve months!  Good luck!

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Comment balloon 10 commentsMichael Delaware • September 28 2010 08:31AM


Great recap of ways to get your credit, thanks for sharing......

Posted by Kathy Torline, Colorado Springs Real Estate Blog 719-287-1049 (ERA Herman Group Real Estate) over 4 years ago

Hi Michael, good input for the home buyer before they start looking.

Posted by Dan Edward Phillips, Realtor and Broker/Owner (Dan Edward Phillips) over 4 years ago

Michael, this is a great post. So many people do ask this question, I didn't think aboout the fact that maybe they were denied. Thanks for sharing!

Posted by Kaera Mims, Associate Broker, e-PRO, REALTOR; Hampton, Newport News, York Co. (Liz Moore & Associates) over 4 years ago

Thanks for the comments everyone!

Posted by Michael Delaware, REALTOR®, CRS (Troxel Realty Co. LLC) over 4 years ago

Thank you Michael!

Posted by Joshua Zargari, MJ Decorators Workshop (MJ Decorators Workshop LI staging and home decorating) over 4 years ago

Better than getting all three of them at one time is to monitor your credit reports by ordering one every four months from a different company. They all have basically the same information and simply score it differently.

So you can start today by ording one from Equifax. Then, on January 25, 2011, order one from Experian. Then, on May 25, 2011, order one from Transunion.

Then repeat the process, and you'll always have an updated report that is no older than four months. If any one has problems or incorrect information, then and only then order the other two and correct all the information at the same time.

Posted by Not a real person over 4 years ago

Russel, that is a great strategy on staggering your ordering of them every 4 months.  Its a good way to keep track and dispute issues.  Great tip!

Posted by Michael Delaware, REALTOR®, CRS (Troxel Realty Co. LLC) over 4 years ago

Michael, I was about to tell you what Russel told you but I saw his name in your comment, so I see he's already been here. He's the one who taught me that secret, and I've passed it on to my Clients.

Posted by Jim Frimmer, Realtor & CDPE, Mission Valley specialist (HomeSmart Realty West) over 4 years ago

Jim, this is a great way to rotate through all three reports.  It is important to remember though that not all three bureaus will report the same things, and some items may show on only one depending on the location of the country the person lives in and the preference of the creditor in reporting negative or adverse accounts.  I have found some creditors save money by only reporting to one bureau in my area, which is usually TransUnion. 

However, if there is a lot to address, this 4 month rotation program makes a lot of sense.

Posted by Michael Delaware, REALTOR®, CRS (Troxel Realty Co. LLC) over 4 years ago

Thanks for this information.  I did not realize there were so many ways to obtain a free report.

Posted by Grace Culver, Advertising (Michigan Homes Network - home advertising and search ) over 4 years ago