Why should I buy a credit report? It is true that you can get free credit reports under the FCRA and the FACT act. All consumers are eligible for one free credit report from each of the credit bureau once every 12 months. You may also be eligible for more than one free credit report depending upon circumstances and the state laws. However, you can also buy your credit report from a credit bureau. The reason that you may need to purchase a credit report a credit bureau is that you may need to check your credit report more than the number of times you can avail it for free.
Generally when a consumer is looking to make a sizable purchase on credit, such as a home loan or an automobile loan he is advised to check his credit report a month 4-6 weeks prior to making the purchase. This helps you to get a better idea of what your credit report contains and the information that your creditor will be looking at while evaluating your application for the loan. This gives you ample time to check your credit report for errors and to dispute it with the credit bureaus.
You can check your credit report for any negative history and be prepared to explain it to the creditor if he raises questions about prior credit records.
Another reason why people buy credit reports from a credit bureau is when they want to make frequent checks in to their credit reports. You may want to monitor not only your own credit report and the information that is reported on it but also the credit report of your entire family including children. The credit bureaus and particularly Experian offer credit monitoring plans where you can monitor the credit report for your entire family for a monthly fee. If you go on the Experian website, you will find that they offer a 7 day free trial of the Credit Monitoring service.
A free personal credit report does not come with a credit score. A credit score needs to be purchased from a credit bureau or another respectable 3rd party. It is commonly advised that you should order a credit score at least once from a credit bureau. when you purchase your credit score from the credit bureau you get a lot of information along with it that is of great educational value. You will be provided explanatory information on all the factors that are affecting your credit score both positively and negatively.