Personal Finance Basics – Do You Check Your Credit Score Regularly?

Did you know that the credit companies can make mistakes? Sometimes you can be refused credit because of a bad credit score that is just plain wrong. Somehow or other they have the wrong information about your credit history and this is being passed throughout the industry. It could be a mistake on their part or a misunderstanding but it really does not matter at the moment because it is there and is affecting you. Your personal finance basics knowledge should have a default position, which is to check your score regularly.

Checking your score regularly will also let you know if your financial activities are affecting your score. In either case you should check out any instance of your score lowering. Checking your score regularly enables you to deal with any problems as they start to appear and not when they affect your finances.

People have different ideas about how often you should check your score. It depends on your circumstances and whether or not your finances are changing. But, as a minimum, I recommend you check your score at least annually. The vast majority of people do not do this.

The main bureaus operate independently so some could have different information than others. If you check your score regularly you could find misleading or false information about you that could affect your ability to borrow money when you need it. Now you need to check this out and get it dealt with before it becomes a bigger concern.

Most of the time, any discrepancy will be a mistake on their part. Communicating with the bureau concerned and talking to them about it can correct this.

Unfortunately, sometimes an ‘error’ you find could be identity theft. Here it is imperative you contact all the bureaus concerned and the fraud squad immediately.

An alert will be placed on your file, which lets anyone checking your score know you have been a fraud victim. This alert will also inform you when lenders are looking at your files. If you are not requiring any financial transactions then it could be the identity thief is trying to obtain a loan in your name.

An alert will usually last between 90 to 180 days. But you can get this extended if you request it. With the alert in place a lender can tell that the person trying to obtain the loan is not you and will decline it.

If you do not regularly check out your credit score you are placing yourself at risk. Your personal finance basics knowledge should be used to remove this risk.

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