Frequently Asked Questions
What is a good credit score?
Credit scores range from 300 to 900. You may also have a zero score if you have not previously established credit with any creditor that reports to the credit bureaus.
Generally in the mortgage industry if your score is below 600 you will usually be considered a sub-prime borrower and you will usually have to pay a higher interest rate. The exception would be if you can qualify for a FHA loan. Ideally you would like for your score to be 660 or above.
Can I get a Free Credit Report?
You are entitled to a free copy of your credit report every 12 months. You may order this at the website www.annualcreditreport..com. You may get your FICO(credit score) by paying a fee.
If you have been denied credit for any reason send a copy of the denial letter to each of the credit bureaus and they will send you a copy of your credit report.
If you are unemployed and will be seeking work within the next 60 days you may request a free copy of your credit report.
If you are currently on welfare you are entitled to a free copy of your credit report.
Who are the credit bureaus?
There are three major credit bureaus that are used by most lending institutions. They are Equifax, Experian and Trans Union. You may get their contact information by going to the Credit Bureaus tab on this web site.
Will requesting my credit report hurt my credit score?
Requesting your credit report will not affect your credit scores. An inquiry will be added to your credit history every time anyone requests your credit report. However, inquiries from you yourself are not provided to lenders and are not included in the calculation of your credit scores.
Do other inquiries hurt my credit scores?
There are two types of inquiries other than your personal inquiry. One is the an inquiry that is the result of your application for a loan or other services. Since these inquiries can represent new debt that is not yet reflected as an account on your credit report these inquiries can affect your credit scores.
However, inquiries have a relatively small impact on your credit score. If your credit history is strong, inquiries may have no impact at all.
The second kind of inquiry includes inquiries for employment purposes, account reviews by your existing creditors and a review of your credit report to make preapproved credit offers. Since these inquiries do not represent new debt for you or they are inquiries that you did not initiate, they do not affect your scores.