Your credit scores change as new data hits your credit file. However, your file is only as accurate as the information reported by your creditors to Transunion®, Equifax® and Experian®. Credit report errors happen – and when they do – your credit scores may pay the price.
In fact, 1 in 5 people have an error on their credit report that can affect their scores.
Don’t let undetected credit report errors damage your scores.
Regularly check your reports from all three bureaus for changes, outdated information – and unauthorized activity that could indicate identity theft or fraud.
Here’s a watch-list of credit report errors to dispute:
Personal Information Errors
- Name misspellings or names that don’t belong to you
- Addresses that don’t belong to you
- Inaccurate birth dates
Account Information Errors
- False delinquencies
- Inaccurate limit information
- Inaccurate account status
- Accounts that don’t belong to you
- Duplicate account listings
- Accounts incorrectly listed as being in collection
- Negative information older than seven years (except Chapter 7 bankruptcies and unpaid tax liens)
Court Records Errors
- Bankruptcies, tax liens, and other judgments that don’t belong to you
- Public records older than seven years (except bankruptcies, which can stay on your report for up to 10 years)
Credit inquiries from companies you don’t recognize should also be researched.
If you did not authorize the inquiry, dispute it! Multiple inquiries, especially within a short time frame, can drop your scores and be a big red flag to lenders.
If you’re not monitoring your credit reports, you might be surprised at what you find.
The cost of leaving your credit unattended can be high. Compare all of the information on your credit reports from TransUnion, Equifax and Experian very carefully. If you spot any mistakes, discrepancies between the reports, suspicious activity or changes you didn’t authorize, file a dispute with the credit reporting bureaus to help protect your scores.