What’s on a Credit Report?

Seriously, how are we, the average Joe or Jane on the street, supposed to build (or rebuild) our credit when no one ever teaches what’s on our credit to begin with? Well, here’s the answer:

• Contact information (no impact on credit score): It simply includes the names, addresses, employers, and, sometimes, marital statuses under which you have applied for credit in the past.
• Credit/Trade Lines: Details on the various lines of credit the consumer has had in the past 7-10 years, including balances, terms and their history of on-time payments.
• Public Records: List of court actions, including bankruptcies, judgments, tax liens and possibly evictions over the past 7-10 years
• Inquiries: List of creditors and businesses that have looked at your credit in the past 2 years. Those you authorize as part of an application for credit may impact your score (slightly), while others do not.
• Personal Statement (no impact on credit score): Up to 99 words the consumer may add to their own report. We generally suggest this only be used to clarify report errors.

Since up to 25% of all credit reports contain a significant error (usually in the credit lines or public records section), you should know where to go to dispute and resolve the error. It’s no guarantee, but go directly to the credit bureau’s home pages (EquiFax.com, Experian.com and TransUnion.com) and follow the “Dispute Error” instructions.

If you have any suggestions or stories on how you’ve experienced relief from credit cards and other debt feel free to share in the comment section below. Tips, tricks and other suggestions are always welcome!

1-877-OUT-DEBT (688-3328)


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    Hi Jerry,

    By all means please call in to speak to one of our Certified Credit Counselors to discuss your questions in detail. 877-688-3328, if you are already a client your Customer Service Representative would be more than happy to talk to you as well.

    Thank you.


    I received a letter from a legal services agency in the mail recently because of my credit card accounts being stopped for the first two months this year. This happened because I had consecutive overdraft fees last year by my bank, and they stopped paying all four of my monthly credit cards, so in Febuary I had to pay double on all accounts with late fees, etc., and a huge negative number in my checking account. A red flag was raised, which definately affected my credit score.I paid them all, but I felt the pinch.

    I want to know: how did this legal servives agency know about my situation? I called them and was sent a contract by email, but I don’t feel any easier. Since lawyers are involved, I know I am going from one business to the next to pay back my debt. I like your site because of the wealth of information available for people with money problems. Can you please answer my first question.


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