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Checking Credit Reports for Accuracy

A 10-part Credit Repair Guide

<< Part 5 — Part 6Part 7 >>

verifying credit report accuracyHow to Check Credit Reports for Accuracy
Now that you know how to read credit reports, look through all the debts listed on each of your three reports.  Do all those debts belong to you?  With identity theft running rampant in today's society, you may find debts that you are in no way responsible for.  If so, be sure to highlight or circle those debts and dispute the credit bureau(s) as soon as possible.

Another common error found on credit reports is listing a loan twice.  This often occurs when loans get sold.  By allowing such an error to appear on your credit report, you may be denied credit in the future, as it appears like you're carrying too much debt.  A related inaccuracy is when closed accounts are listed as open.

Check to see if all your paid debts are listed as "paid."  If they aren't, that will wreak further havoc your payment history (35% of your credit score).  Also, several of your credit or loan accounts may be incorrectly labeled as "delinquent" or "in collections." 

Most debts have a 7-year statute of limitations.  Whether that debt is paid or unpaid, after 7 years that debt should no longer appear in your credit report.  If you spot a debt that's over 7 years old, make sure it's deleted as soon as possible.  Exceptions to the 7-year rule include bankruptcies, which will often remain on your report for at least 10 years.

Believe it or not, excluding accounts from your credit reports can also affect your FICO score.  Such an error can make it seem like you a lack a solid credit history, especially when those accounts are in good standing.

Keep an eye out for inaccurate credit limits.  30% of your credit score consists of amounts owed.  In order to achieve a good credit rating, you need a good debt-to-income ratio.  If your debt significantly outweighs your income, you're in bad shape.  It's suggested that every consumer maintains a debt-to-income ratio of 36% or less.  Now, if you hold a $500.00 balance on a credit card with an available credit limit of $2,000.00, you're only using 25% of your available credit.  If that credit limit is listed as $1,000.00, you're using 50%.  That will, most likely, have a drastic effect on your credit score.

Even errors in basic information (i.e.:  name, social security number, date of birth) may affect your credit score.  For example, if your name is Ronald Harrison, Jr. and your father (Ronald Harrison, Sr.) has accrued significant debt, that debt may be transferred to your file if the name is listed incorrectly.  Your credit reports must be 100% accurate.  No error is too big or small.  

As I've mentioned previously, 79% of credit reports contain errors.  25% of those errors are severe enough to cause consumers to get denied loans and credit.  Your three credit bureaus are far from infallible, so if you don't stay on top of your credit reports, don't be surprised to encounter a major decrease in your credit score, forcing you repair your credit. Visit www.skybluecreditrepair.com for more credit repair help.

verifying accurary of credit reports
 

Go to Part 7  Disputing Negative Items
Now that you know how to find errors on your credit reports, find out how you dispute negative items. See how signing up for credit repair services can expedite the credit dispute process.
 

Need more help? 
We understand the difficulty of going through financial stress. Let us make the search for the best debt settlement company and the top credit repair companies easy for you.
 
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