Learn to get free credit reports from 3 credit bureaus every year.
All consumers who use credit in one form or another, usually have a credit history with the credit bureaus. A credit history means that you have a credit report as well. A copy of your credit file exists with each of the national credit reporting agencies/ credit bureaus, TransUnion, Experian and Equifax. You can get a free credit report from each of these CRAs. This free credit report is also known as free annual credit report and can accessed by all consumers online, requesting it over the phone or by post. On this page you will learn to access the free copy of your credit file in various situations.
Important: Read this page entirely to learn about other circumstances and locations that may make you eligible for more than 3 free annual credit reports in the year.
To order you free credit report online visit www.AnnualcCreditReport.com. This is the only website that can give you the official annual free report that you are entitled to every year. There are other offers available on other websites also but they are mostly trial offers for some other service like credit monitoring. You can use those websites as well but ordering your credit report on www.annualcreditreport.com means that you can access a free copy each from Experian, TransUnion and Equifax with no strings attached. The process of accessing your credit file online is pretty straightforward. You will just have to follow the instructions once you are on the website.
Get Credit Report On Phone, Post & Online
Ordering your Free Credit Report On Phone
You can order your free credit report on the phone as well by calling up the toll free phone number 1-877-322-8228. This will connect you to the same department that handles the online website of AnnualCreditReport.com. You will have to go through the same process that you had to follow when you were ordering online. You will need to provide identification details on order to establish your identity such as your social security number.
Ordering your Free Credit Report By Post
To place an order for your credit report by post you can print out the form for “free credit report request” from FTC website here Annual Credit Report Request Form . Fill up this form and send it to the following address. Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281.
Eligibility for More Than 3 Free Reports
You may be eligible for more than one free credit report from each national credit bureau. See the table below for free or discounted credit reports in your state.
|State||1st Request||2nd Request||Additional||Time Frame|
Access Free Credit Report Online
The best way to gain access to your credit report is probably online. It is the fastest and the most secure. Ordering by post and on the phone will require that the credit report be sent physically to you by postal mail. Not only does this take much longer but is also less secure as the post may get lost in transit. Although, complete precautions are taken when sending you credit report by post. All names and account numbers are truncated and only contain the last or first few digits or alphabets that while enable you to identify the account, will be completely useless to anyone else reading them.
How to Sign Up On AnnualCreditReport.com
The process of signing up for free credit reports on annualcreditreport.com, although straightforward for most part, can get lengthy. You can access free credit reports from Experian, Equifax and TransUnion but will need to register and complete the process separately for all three. The process for registering with Equifax and Experian is simpler than TransUnion. We will explain below why this is. In order to register and access your credit report you will need to provide proof of your identity. This is usually provided in the form of information like your social security number, information about your credit and loans such as home loan account number etc.
Equifax Report on AnnualCreditReport.com
The Experian request process is fairly easy to use. Just answer a few questions and you’ll see your credit report online in seconds.
- Adding a credit score to your Experian credit report costs $5.95 If you do wish to purchase an add-on service, you will need to do so with a credit or debit card. Experian does not take personal checks.
- Once you have viewed your report, be sure to write down your credit report number for future reference. You’ll need to enter this number in to their online dispute form if you want to return to check your annual report again within 30 days. You won’t be required to file a dispute; this is just how they have returning customers login.
- You can contact Experian customer service here: Equifax:1-800-685-1111; www.equifax.com
Experian Report on AnnualCreditReport.com
The Equifax ordering process includes several promotions for other products.
- You’ll be offered discounted credit monitoring and analysis tools during your request. You are not required to purchase any of these products.
- You can add a FICO credit score to your order for $7.95.
- If you do wish to purchase an add-on service, you will need to do so with a credit or debit card. Equifax does not take personal checks.
- If you want to return to see your credit report online during the 30-day period, you will need to select that option and create an account before you view your online report.
- You can login here to check your free Equifax credit report again for 30 days. Your username is probably your Social Security number.
- You can contact Equifax customer service here: Experian: 1-888-397-3742; www.experian.com
TransUnion Report On AnnualCreditReport
- The TransUnion ordering process is the most complex of the three credit bureaus. If you are a new customer, carefully create your username and password and record it somewhere for future reference. You’ll need this information if you want to see your TransUnion credit data again.
- If you have ever ordered a copy of your credit report through TransUnion, TrueCredit, FreeCreditProfile, or one of their partners, you will need to enter your username and password to access your free annual report online.
- If you don’t remember your username and password, you can try to reset it online here. If that doesn’t work, call 1-866-744-8221 and press #2 for help with your login. Adding a credit score to your TransUnion credit report costs $5.95.
- TransUnion allows you to pay for your online purchases with a personal check, debit card, or credit card.
- You can login here to check your free TransUnion credit report again for 30 days. You can contact TransUnion customer service here.
- TransUnion: 1-800-916-8800; www.transunion.com.
Free Credit Reports in Special Circumstanes
You are eligible for a free copy of your personal credit report under the FCRA in the following circumstances. You can get these in addition to the 3 annual free credit reports from AnnualCreditReport.com.
- If you have had adverse taken against your based on some information in your credit report. E.g. If a creditor disapproves your credit application because of your credit report, he is required to inform you and give you instructions as to how to access your free credit report.
- If you are unemployed and plan to seek employment in the next 60 days.
- If you are on welfare assistance.
- If you have a victim of identity theft. Apart from this certain states have different laws that might allow you to get extra credit reports for free or at discounted prices.
Why Do You Get A Free Credit Report?
There are many offers that are available to a person to get their credit report for free. However, in order to understand the difference between these offers and your free annual credit report from annualcreditreport.com you need to understand where your free annual report comes from why its free. Getting one credit report for free from each credit bureau i.e. Experian, TransUnion and Equifax is your right and is governed by 2 federal laws. The two federal laws under which you can get a free credit report are the FACT act and the FCRA. The FACT act is best known for amending the FCRA by including the legislation that every consumer could access his credit report from each of the 3 national credit bureaus, i.e. Experian, Equifax and TransUnion for free once in a period of 12 months.
Any other offer that you find on third party websites and even on the websites of TransUnion, Experian and Equifax are trial offers that are usually clubbed with subscribing to some other service of theirs like credit monitoring. When the trial expires your credit card will get charged with the amount of the service unless of course your cancel within the trial period.