Five Items to Check on Your Credit Report:

January 24, 2014

There are many factors that effect your credit score, here are some key items you should be aware of:

Personal Information – Each credit report lists basic information about who you are. Carefully check your full name and any variations; your spouse's name; birth date; your Social Security number; your current and past addresses. If there are misspellings or incorrect address, these items might have been listed when a lender reported the data inaccurately, and can be corrected.

Current accounts – Each of your active accounts, such as mortgage loans and credit cards will be listed, along with the dates the account was open. They may appear "in good standing" if you're current on your payments, or "delinquent" if your payment history isn't consistent.

Closed accounts– Closed and inactive lines of credit frequently still appear on your credit report. Various items things will stay on your credit report for different lengths of time. This is because different accounts speak to your payment history and how you handled your account.

Inquiries – When a lender checks your credit as part of the approval process, a hard inquiry is placed on your credit report. Having too many hard inquiries could mean that you are overextending yourself and could potentially lower your score. Furthermore, hard inquiries are the result of you requesting additional lines of credit from a lender. If you didn't authorize the inquiry, this could be a sign of identity theft.

Negative Marks– Negative marks, such as past due accounts, bankruptcies or court judgments, will almost always appear on a credit report and may even be placed in a separate section on the report. These are the items can drop your credit score significantly. Only correcting your past credit behavior and time will lessen the impact these items have on your credit score.

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