Thursday, June 28, 2007

Three Credit Bureaus Means Repairing Three Credit Reports

How many credit reports do you have? It would make sense to most of us to only have one. Right? Somewhere in the credit industry somebody came up with the great idea to have more than one credit report. Why?

As it has worked out over the years there has become three major credit bureaus and each one of them keep records on consumer credit. When a consumer inquires about credit at a bank, (that is they submitted an application to get a loan) the bank will then run a credit check. This is how the credit bureaus make their money. The information sent from the credit bureau to the bank called a credit report or credit file is paid for by the bank or financial institution. The credit check/credit report fees are many times then passed down and paid for by you, the consumer.

Anyway, three Credit Bureaus means three different yet similar credit reports to keep track of and repair. That means that you may have accounts on one credit report that is not on the other two.

I highly recommend obtaining all three credit reports if you are going to do credit repair on your credit.

The three major credit bureaus and their addresses (click below):

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Thursday, December 21, 2006

Four Credit Repair Tips To Remember

If you are thinking of doing credit repair keep these tips in mind:

1. Get a copy of your credit report from each of the three credit bureaus and dispute any negative accounts on each of them. The three major credit bureaus are Trans Union, Experian, and Equifax.

2. When disputing negative accounts (collections, late payments, repossessions, etc.) remember that the credit bureaus must investigate and verify each account within 30 days or delete the item in dispute.

3. When challenging errors on your credit reports by mail always use use certified and return receipt mail. This will let you know if and when your letters were delivered to the credit bureaus.

4. Do not get discouraged when doing credit repair. If the credit bureaus are able to verify that the accounts you are disputing with them are in fact yours continue disputing them every 30 days. People have found that a prolonged amount of credit repair efforts have given them the best results.

Why A Damaged Credit Score Can Kill You Financially

Do you know your credit score? Knowing your credit score can help you know where you stand as a borrower. Having a good score can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars over the course of a single year.

A good score is anywhere from 640 to 750. Any score above 750 could be considered excellent. A score between 600 and 640 is fair and below 600 could be considered poor.

OK, so you have your credit score but it's terrible, can you fix it? Yes, there is hope for you.

Here is a quick overview of ways to raise your credit score:

1. Repair your credit report. Your credit score is derived from your credit report. You will need to get a copy online, through the mail, or call for it. Find the negative items (late payments, collections, bankruptcies, etc.) and dispute them.

2. Pay down your credit cards to below 50% of their limits. Example: You have a credit card with a limit of $1000 you need to get your balance you owe to below $500.

3. Consolidate your debt. This can help you with getting your credit card balances below 50%. You can get a loan to pay off all your high interest credit cards. This will more than likely improve your score.

4. Do you have too many credit cards? Having too many credit cards may hurt your credit score. Try to have no more than 5 or 6 credit cards, but do not rush to cancel any accounts yet. If you have a choice cancel the newer credit card accounts before the old ones. You do this because credit cards with a long history of payments has a very positive affect on your credit score.

5. Pay your bills on time! This needs no explanation.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Inquiries Can Have A Negative Impact On Your Credit Score

Inquiries are when you apply for credit and a creditor "inquires" into your credit report to see if your credit score is good enough to qualify you for a loan, credit card, home mortgage, or any other type of credit. The inquiry itself is then reported on your credit report.

There are inquiries made by creditors from time to time that are not a result of you applying for credit. These are usually creditors that have extended you credit in the past and that you have given permission to view your credit report. I like to call these inquiries "soft inquiries" because they will usually not hurt your credit score that is derived from your credit report.

Inquiries that can damage a credit score are the ones that are a result of you applying for credit. These "hard inquiries" as I like to call them, may only lower your credit score a couple of points a piece, but a couple of points lost on your credit score may mean a point or two gained on your interest rates.

It should be noted that when applying for a home mortgage multiple inquires within a months time frame may not effect your credit score. This is because the credit scoring model takes into account that many people shop for home loans to find the best rates. They have determined that this is a sign of a responsible consumer thus the risk is not increased for creditors.

So what do you do to keep the amounts of inquiries to a minimum on your credit report?

Choose wisely when shopping for credit. Do not open a new department store account simply to get 15% off your purchase. Weigh the consequences and keep inquiries in mind.

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Letter to Creditor



RE: Acct. #

Dear Creditor:

I am writing in an attempt to settle the account you are listing under my name and social security number.

I agree______________Company should have been paid for service rendered but I do not agree with this being on my credit report as a bad debt. I would like to put this account to rest as I hope you would. I did not use your services but am negligent in not making certain the person buying the residence had changed the billing from my name to his. I never received a statement or overdue notice. I no longer was living in the home do I had no reason to suspect a payment problem.

My concern is if I made payments to you in an attempt to stop negative reporting to the credit bureau, the balance in my credit file would show ZERO PAID COLLECTION, and then those negative ratings would continue for another seven years.
This would be wrong as it is not a true indicator of my willingness or ability to pay debts.

I believe I am caught in the computers and a credit reporting system that does not tell what truly happened.

I am requesting your help in deletion of this account from my credit reports when payment in full is received as this does not accurately portray what has happened. I have been informed by a reputable source that this can be done and is within the purview of the law.

I look forward to your prompt attention to this matter and an expedient favorable resolution.



General Dispute Letter to a Collection Agency


Collection Address

RE: Acct. # ...

To whom it may concern:

When living in New Jersey, I received service through ______ Telephone Company. During that time, there were numerous billing errors. I kept being mixed up with another family. Though time consuming and aggravating for me, the phone company always found and corrected the errors.Before moving to New York, I stopped service and paid the final bell. I never thought I would continue to be plagued with ____ Telephone Company errors.

I am sure if you speak to a human being and not a computer at ______ Telephone Company, there will be a record of the problems we were having with wrong billings. I am also certain you will discover this is not my debt.

Though I was assured by the phone company at the time that my name was not the cause of the errors, I’m not so sure.I would truly appreciate your assistance.


Your Name

Sample Dispute Letter Requesting a Reinvestigation of Items on Your Credit Report



Credit Bureau Address

Dear TRW:

I have been around and around with your company regarding the errors which I have. And they continue to remain on my consumer credit report.I am again noting that problems have been discovered and they continue to remain unresolved.

I don’t know how to better state my problem nor do I know how to correct the errors.

The following accounts are not mine.

Account names and numbers

Since you have not given me names of persons with their business addresses that you contacted for re-verification of information, so that I could follow up as I requested, I assume that you have not been able to verify the information I have disputed.If this problem continues and I am forced to seek some form of professional assistance, you have been forewarned of the harm which this problem is causing me.

I shall assume that 30 days constitutes a “reasonable time” to complete these actions unless you immediately notify me otherwise.

Send me an updated copy of my credit report with these items deleted.


Your name

Sample Letter Disputing Specific Items and Inquiries On Your Credit Report


Credit BureauAddress

RE: Credit report #

Dear TRW:

Going over my credit report I have found it has many errors. I request your investigation of the following:

1. Sears I spoke with Sears again to verify my records. They confirmed this as my account and that there were no late payments to this account. They will draft a letter if needed to correct this error. Please contact this creditor.

2. Foreclosure 5/92 I did not have a foreclosure in 1992 or since then. Please remove this.

3. Collection Account_________I have tried to get to the bottom of this with the information your company supplied. How are you able to confirm when I cannot? (See enclosed copy). This is not mine. Please remove this.The consumer has no protection against automobile salesmen who are not concerned about a persons credit report or what problems multiple inquiries cause. Your credit bureau has legal responsibility in this matter.

There should be more supervision on access to credit reports.I did not authorize the following inquiries and demand they be removed from my file:

1. GMAC There are 4 different days in November of 2000. Why would this be? Please remove 3 of these entries. I only authorized one time.

2. Nissan Motor Acceptance Corp. I only authorized one. Please remove the other 4 entries.

These listed accounts are not my debts nor my authorized inquiries. Please correct this by the removal of these items from my credit report. Please send a copy of my corrected possible to my address listed below.


Your signature
Social Security Number

Sample Letter If You Get No Response From a Credit Bureau


ATT: Consumer AssistanceCredit BureauAddress

RE: Credit report #______

Dear TRW:

On March_______and April__________, I sent you letters requesting items be investigated on my credit report. (See enclosed copies)As of yet I have not received a response from you. Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act you are required to respond within a “reasonable period of time.”

I am sending this letter certified so I will know you did receive it. In this way I will have no option but to pursue my legal rights if I do not receive a response.


Your signature
Your name printed
Your Address
Your SS#

Sample Letter to Dispute Credit Report


Credit BureauAddress

RE: Acct#..

Dear TRW:

I have just received my credit report and have noted that it contains erroneous information regarding the following accounts. I would like them deleted from my record:

Collection Account____________ This is not correct, please remove it.
American Express___________ This is not mine please delete it.Sears Account__________ this is mine but was never past due.

Please reinvestigate and delete these disputed items. 30 days constitutes a reasonable amount of time to confirm these. Please send names and business addresses of those persons you contacted for any verifications also, as per the Fair Credit Reporting Act, please send me notification that the items have been deleted.

Please send an updated copy of my credit report to the following address:


Your name
Your address
Your Social Security #

Credit Repair: Legal Action

Here are some actions you can take if the items you disputed were not verified in time:

Contact the Attorney General’s Office in the city where the creditor who is reporting the unverified item. Tell them that there is a creditor who is damaging your credit report by reporting a false account. Say that you disputed the account and did not receive verification. This is a legal service they will do for you and almost certainly they get the item removed.

You can also take the creditor to small claims court. Call the county clerk’s office and ask about how to get a court date. This is where keeping all your records comes in handy. You will have all the mail receipts and copies of letters you sent as proof. You can make money suing the creditor. The creditor will also have to pay for all attorney’s fees. Contact an attorney for a free consultation about this matter.

Other Powerful Credit Repair Techniques

If the account has been paid off, but was past due at one time, write that it is your account but was never past due. Say that you need it to be reported as never late.If the credit bureaus were able to verify any disputed information as correct the information would stay on your credit report. So you then need to contact the creditor who verified the information and who sent it to the credit bureau in the first place. Call the creditor and tell them that you need written proof that this is your account.

Creditors usually store account information on their computers. The original signed documents are often lost or thrown away. This makes it impossible for them to verify your disputes.

Federal Law requires creditors to show you written proof that disputed accounts are yours. This means the creditor must have the original documents you signed with the creditor.

More Difficult Items to Repair On Your Credit Report

-Accounts that you still owe money on
-Recent bankruptcies-Current collection accounts
-IRS or State Liens

These are difficult to change or remove because creditors keep these accounts close by and are expecting payments on them. Even so, it is possible to remove these items.

Easier Credit Items to Repair

-Accounts that were late but now are paid off


-Late payments-Inquiries-Charge-offs

-Discharged bankruptcies

-accounts older than 2 years

Creditors are not as concerned about paid off items, and they will usually not take the time to verify a dispute concerning them.

Credit Repair Takes Time

People have found that by continually disputing reports over and over again they can effectively remove negative items. Usually more progress is made each time you dispute items but do not get discouraged if results are not achieved every time. Remember, credit bureaus want you to get discouraged; they make their money from reporting this information.

Remember that the creditors who report the accounts to the credit bureaus must be the ones to verify the information. They may not have the time to verify the items within 30 days. Your dispute must be handled very carefully by both the credit bureaus and by the creditors. You can see how it is possible to remove negative information.

Credit Repair Do’s and Don’t's

Do not use dispute forms or file numbers provided by the bureau. This will cause fewer delays by the credit bureau asking for clarification.

Do not allow anybody to send dispute letters. The credit bureau will think you hired a credit repair company or law firm to repair your credit. This doesn’t work as well as if you sent it personally.

Do not confirm any information on an item if any of it is wrong.

Do not use letterhead. This will look as though somebody is doing this for you.

Do dispute all the negative items in question on your report. Credit bureaus must verify by law all items in dispute.

Do send all letters return receipt mail.

Do send disputes during the busiest times of the year. Send disputes from October through January. These are the busiest times for creditors and credit bureaus.

The Easy Steps to Credit Repair

1. Get your three credit reports. Call for your credit report or get it instantly online, or send for it in the mail.

2. Once you have your reports, review them and find all the items you would like to remove or correct.

3. Send letters to dispute negative accounts. You do not want to use the dispute forms included with your reports. It is more effective to use the sample letters I have included with this report. With your letter send a copy of your credit report with the disputed items highlighted. Make sure to keep your original copy for your files.

4. Disputed items are deleted or corrections are made on them. (If not go to step #5)

5. Negotiate with collection companies and creditors. Get in writing that when the debt is settled they will report it to the credit bureaus as current, paid off, and never late. Tell them the debt is not worth paying if it still remains on your credit report. If they don’t agree say, “well I guess I’ll just have to file for bankruptcy and you will get nothing at all.” Often you can also negotiate to pay a reduced amount.

Removing Negative Accounts From Your Credit Report

The following information includes powerful techniques and facts about improving your credit and removing negative items from your report. Use these techniques on all the credit reports from the three credit bureaus I listed earlier.

The Secrets Credit Bureaus Don’t Want Consumers to Know

-Each account on your credit file must be verified when challenged. If the items you challenge are not verified they must be deleted immediately.

-Any accounts can be challenged. Credit bureaus must investigate and verify every disputed item within a “reasonable amount of time,” or they must be deleted.

-Challenged items have been erased mistakenly. This is do to computer operator errors.

-Credit bureaus have to receive their re-verification from creditors. This does not always happen in time or the credit bureau may be to busy to have the time to handle your claims. In this case, the items must be deleted.

-The older the reported item the easier it is to get it deleted. After a year or two creditors documents often get lost, misplaced, or even thrown out.

Sample Letter to Receive Your Credit Reports

November 2, 2002

Equifax Information Services
P.O. Box 740256
Atlanta, GA 30374

To whom it may concern,

Please send me a copy of my current credit report. The following is my current identifying information:

John Johnson
99 9th Ave.
Bad Credit, California 12345

I have lived at the above address for the last three years.

I was born 2/5/71

My Social Security # is 555-66-7777

Thank You,

Your signature
Your printed name

It is a good idea to always use certified and return receipt mail when dealing with credit bureaus. This makes sure your letters are delivered and gives you the date they were delivered.

The Three Major Credit Bureaus

Here are the three major credit bureaus, their phone numbers, and addresses:

Equifax 1-800-685-1111
Equifax Information Services
P.O. Box 740256
Atlanta, GA 30374

Experian 1-888-397-3742
P.O. Box 9595
Allen, TX 75013

Trans Union Corporation 1-800-916-8800
Trans Union LLCConsumer Disclosure Center
P.O. Box 1000
Chester, PA 19022

Obtaining Your Credit Report

You may be able to call the credit bureaus and receive your reports through their automated system, if not you will need to send for them in the mail.

To receive a copy of your credit reports there are three pieces of information you must send the credit bureaus. They are:

1. Your full name.

2. A copy of the front of your social security card.

3. A legal mailing address. ( this includes a proof of address such as a billing statement from a creditor or a utility bill)

If you were recently denied credit the credit bureaus by law must send you a free copy of your credit report. You can also get a free copy each year. Do not have anyone else but yourself get your credit reports for you. This will only create another inquiry on your report. An inquiry means that you inquired about receiving credit from a creditor. All inquiries show up on your reports regardless if you were turned down for credit or not.

Some credit bureaus may have local offices in your area. You can go directly to their office and receive your report in person. Look in the yellow pages for listings. (Under Credit Agencies)

The Fair Credit Reporting Act

The Fair Credit Reporting Act is in the favor of the consumer and is the basis of this report. It gives you the advantage over credit reporting bureaus. It allows you to correct, update, amend, delete, and tell your side of the story.

Congress passed the law because of the many errors that the bureaus made. They also felt that everyone deserves a second chance in life.Credit bureaus and creditors must follow The Fair Credit Report Act guidelines when dealing with the consumers’ credit. They must also give the consumer certain rights.

With all this in mind to start removing negative items from your reports you must get very defensive about your report. Remember that these credit bureaus are just record keepers; they make money from selling information about you. Your creditors did not get your permission to sell this information to credit bureaus and you are not sharing any profits with them.

Your rights under The Fair Credit Reporting Act

-You may challenge the information reported on your credit report at any time.

-The information you dispute must be reinvestigated by the credit bureaus with no charge.

-When the credit bureaus do reinvestigate, they must do so within a reasonable amount of time. 30 days constitutes a “reasonable amount of time,” unless the credit bureaus notifies you otherwise. If the bureaus do not get confirmation on the items you dispute within 30 days, they must delete the information from your report immediately.

-If the credit bureau finds any errors in the disputed accounts, they must delete or correct the items on your report immediately.

-You have the right to submit a Consumer Statement to tell your side of the story. If you, as a credit consumer, challenge the accuracy of certain items in your credit report and it is verified by the creditor to be correct, you may request that your explanation of the challenged item be included with the report. Your explanation should not be more than 100 words.Remember your rights they are very important!

Credit Bureaus

Credit bureaus are paid to keep records, nothing more They are paid by creditors to report your credit history. They record who has given you credit, when it was given, how much was given, and whether or not you paid your balances off on time. As you know when you are seeking approval for just about any kind of financing, the lender will check your credit report to see your history of past credit lines.It is imperative that you realize that Credit Bureaus are only record keepers. They are not owned by the government or any other federal institution. They have no legal authority over you.

Credit Bureaus have computers capable of storing data on every person in the United States, however, their means of storing these infinite amounts of information is laden with problems keeping accurate records. As a result many mistakes are made.

Because of all the errors made recording credit histories the federal government has past laws regarding credit reports. Mainly The Fair Credit Reporting Act.

Tips to Improve Your Credit

First of all let me tell you some tips that will help you improve your credit report and keep it from hurting your chances for getting a mortgage loan or any other loan.

- Pay all your payments on time.

This is obvious but people sometimes forget or just neglect to pay their bills because they spent their money on things they don’t really need. Most creditors don’t report late payments until they are 30 days late so if you have bills that are a couple of weeks late and are putting them off because you think that they are already on your credit report, take back that new CD player or other item you don’t really have to have, get your money back and pay your bills!

- Get organized.

When you have the extra time get all your bills together and write down how much you owe on all of them and when they are due. Put a list on your refrigerator and mark down which ones you have payed each month. Making a “plan of attack” so to speak will save you time and will keep you from worrying about when your next payments are due and if you payed them or not.

-Do not apply for credit unless you absolutely need it.

Every time you fill out and return an offering for a new credit card or credit account at a department store an inquiry will be made on your report that will negatively affect your credit. So if you go to the mall and are offered 10% off your purchase if you apply for a charge card with the store you’re shopping at, say, “No thanks.”

-Keep credit card balances below 40% of the maximum credit limit.

For example, if you have a $10,000 limit try to keep what you owe below about $4,000.-Don’t pay off bills with your credit cards. Unless there is no other way to make your payment on time.

Consumer Credit

Creditors use credit reporting agencies for obtaining information on a person when they have applied for any type of financing. There are three major credit reporting bureaus that report credit and background information. They are Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. When you get financing or credit, it is reported to one of these bureaus by the company or creditor you received credit from. The creditor then reports your payment history until your debt is payed in full. These credit reporting bureaus do not check the accuracy of the information that is sent to them by the creditors. They are payed only to report your credit history whether it is true or not!

Credit bureaus also report personal information on every person who has a Social Security number, such as your address, employer, spouse’s name, etc.Because of the many errors reported by credit bureaus, Congress has recently passed The Fair Credit Reporting Act. This law makes credit bureaus more accountable for the accuracy of the information they report. The act also requires the bureaus to divulge information on how to improve your credit scores.If you have been turned down for credit or have recently obtained your credit report and don’t like what was reported, you can take steps that are easy and efficient towards repairing your credit.

I have used these steps myself and it has improved my credit considerably. I have turned negative items, such as late payments and repossessions into positive items or removed them completely from my reports.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Please Visit Our New Site!

Please go to Credit Repair to see our new site.