Check Your Credit Report Every Year
Regardless of your credit history, it always makes good sense to check your credit report on a regular basis (at least once a year). You should check it for several important reasons.
Information in your credit report impacts your ability to get a loan or insurance, and how much you will have to pay for it. See our post: Why Your Credit Score Matters.
You want the information to be correct, complete, and up-to-date at all times. You don’t want to find faulty information after you have applied for a loan or signed up for a new insurance. It will take time to make corrections, and at that point your credit report has already affected your loan or insurance premium.
You want to detect and defend yourself against identity theft. As many as 9 million Americans have their identities stolen each year! Identity thieves may use your information to rent an apartment, get a credit card, or set up a telephone account in your name. Then, when they don’t pay the bills, it ends up on your credit report.
Remember, identity theft is serious. You might lose out on job opportunities, or be denied loans for education, housing or cars because of negative information on your credit report.
If you check your credit report regularly, you can limit the damage caused by identity theft.
When you get your report, look especially for address or employment changes, recent inquiries or activity you do not recognize.