The other day I went up to Roxbury to see my Mom and brothers and while I was up there my older brother went online to get his free annual credit report from AnnualCreditReport.com (not freecreditreport.com from the commercials, which actually does NOT give you a free credit report). The last time I checked all three of my credit reports was in December 2007 so after seeing my older brother pull his reports, I thought that now was as a good a time as any to do the same. Plus, in these uncertain economic times it pays to spend a few minutes checking your credit report to ensure accuracy.
And, as always, the credit report is an interesting thing. I should note that I didn’t ask for my credit score because 1) they charge you for that and 2) when I moved into the new apartment in the summer they ran a credit score on me and it was 790 – I’ll take that number any day! However, there were two discrepancies in my credit report that needed immediate attention.
First, the New Jersey Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (NJHESAA) once reported that I paid 30 days late on one of my student loans (back in 2006). The problem, though, was that the loan was still in deferment and was not due for payment at the time. Back in 2007 when I pulled my credit reports, I noticed this problem and called NJHESAA and while they agreed that this was a mistake on their part, they also said that they couldn’t contact the credit bureaus to have it fixed. So I contacted Experian to get the mistake removed from my report and they took it off without any problems. My mistake in 2007, though, was that I didn’t ask TransUnion or Equifax to remove the discrepancy. So when I pulled up my reports the other day – guess what was sitting there staring at me on those two reports. That’s right – the NJHESAA mistake strikes again!
I sent messages to both TransUnion and Equifax and as of today, Equifax removed the problem and TransUnion is still investigating. I pulled up my Equifax credit report to confirm that they fixed the mistake and I can confirm that they, in fact, did fix the problem. They were very quick and very efficient at addressing this problem.
The second interesting thing that I found on my credit report was an open credit card account that was actually a sub-account off of one of my mother’s credit cards from many years ago. This account was only reported on two of the three credit reporting agencies. Since this account was closed and replaced with a different sub-account (not for me), I submitted disputes with the two agencies that still listed it as open. To date, both agencies are still looking into this one.
The reason for this post is to encourage you to go online and check your credit report at AnnualCreditReport.com. Even if you have excellent credit and a perfect credit history like I do, you may be surprised at what you find.