Credit Score Institute
Your Credit Score Impacts Your Life Everyday!
Credit influences our daily lives in many ways, including our home and job. In this article
we show how and when credit is applied. Enhance your credit for apartment rental ,
insurance quotes, utility accounts, your credit even affects you when trying to find your
Apartments & Your Rental History
When applying for a new apartment rental your prospective landlord will review your
credit report and look for patterns of missed payments or other negative reporting that
could indicate that you may be a rental risk. Should your credit report reflect poorly you
may be required to pay a larger deposit or possibly be turned down. Furthermore each time
a prospective landlord runs your credit report it creates inquiries which can affect your
credit score in a negative manner.
Previously, landlords and rental agencies did not report to the credit bureaus, however
there has been an effort to change this. More property agencies and landlords now are able
to report positive rental history, which will in turn boost your credit rating. Should your
landlord currently not report your rental history, you can request they use a service such as
RentTrack which allows you to pay rental fees online. Then the rental payments can be
reported to your Experian credit report.
Auto Loan Payments
Your credit score can seriously influence auto loan rates that are available to you. Most
auto lenders do not really review your credit reports and financial history in detail; instead,
they rely solely on your score and some basic application data. Should you have a high
credit score (750+), you should qualify for the best rates available (sometimes as low as
0%). However, people with major credit issues can usually be approved for an auto loan,
but at much higher rates. The better auto loan rates are typically granted by online lenders
and credit unions, not your local auto dealers. It is imperative to limit the number of loans
applications you file since inquiries from auto loan applications can lower your credit
Cell Phone Choices and Providers
Cell phone companies also check your credit score before making a decision to grant you
service. If you have credit issues you may be asked to put down a large down payment or
pay larger monthly fees for a service contract. There are pre paid cell phone services
available that do not require a credit check. Beware some contracts include verbiage that
allows the company to review your credit at any point. As with auto loan applications and
rental application running your credit for a cell phone will increase you inquiries and can
lower your credit score.
Checking Accounts History
Banks typically will not check your credit report when applying for a checking or savings
account. However, they do review your ChexSystems report before allowing you to open a
new account. This report is not based on your credit report, but instead reports records of
bounced checks or other derogatory banking history.
Child Support Enforcement Agency Records
Child support enforcement agencies may check the credit reporting and child support
payment records of parents who are delinquent in paying child support. Unlike auto loan
applications and rental applications this inquiry will not appear on your credit report and
does not damage your credit scores. However child support non-payment is reported by
these agencies to the credit bureaus. Non-payment can lower your credit scores.
Credit Card Approvals and Costs
When you apply for a new credit card, the company reviews your credit score to determine
if you qualify for a card and what terms you should receive. Most credit cards offer
different rate options for clients with different credit ratings. Some have special
requirements for opening the account. Usually rewards cards and low APR cards require
higher credit scores. Secured and pre-paid cards allow borrowers with credit problems to
obtain a card. Credit card companies often review the credit scores of their existing
customers and in turn may adjust their rates. Credit card application inquiries can lower
your credit score.
Employers Application Reviews
Potential employers must have written permission from the applicant before they can
review their credit report. Typically employers review the credit report for major negative
records or discrepancies. If an employer chooses to take “adverse action” based on credit
report information, they must notify you first and provide you with a copy of your credit
report. Employers may also check the credit reports of existing employees, as long as they
previously disclosed that they may take such action. When an employer checks your credit
report it does not negatively affect your credit score.
Government Assistance & Licensing
Any government agency can access limited information about your credit files without
your permission such as name, address, former addresses, current and former employer.
However credit checks are usually required when applying for government assistance or
Home and auto insurance agencies are now using credit data along with your application
information to determine rates and terms. The reports and scores used by the insurance
industry are slightly different from what is used by creditors and lenders, but your basic
data and standing should be the same. Once you have given permission, the insurance
agent will pull your credit report and calculate your “insurance risk score.” The higher
your score, the better your insurance rates may be. This credit inquiry will appear on your
credit report but does not usually harm your credit score.
Mortgage lenders review all three credit reports and credit scores as part of their
application process. Since a mortgage loan is much larger than an auto or student loan, the
review process is much more detailed. In order to receive the lowest mortgage interest
rates, your credit scores should be above the 700 range. Mortgage applications do appear
on your credit report and can lower your credit score.
Student Loan Approval
Federal student loans do not require a credit check. The interest rates for these loans are
based on national rates. Also when you consolidate federal loans, the new lender will not
check your credit report. Only with private student loans or specific situations may credit
checks be required for student loans.
Utility Accounts for Deposits
Electricity, cable, and other utility companies may check your credit report with your
permission to determine whether a deposit, or a co-signer, will be needed. Some with poor
credit may pay higher rates for their utilities. Inquiries from utility applications do not
harm your credit score.
are Changing Daily...
Change Your Financial Destiny
Going Beyond Credit Scores!
Next Frontier in Credit Scores:
Predicting Personal Behavior
The next Frontier in credit information can
include your medical records, your rental history
and so much more. The credit industry has
devised a new way to sell your information to an
ever broadening array of companies and people.
The newest matrix claims a far better lending
prediction outcome for their customers. This was
the article as it appeared in the Wall Street
By SCOTT THURM Wall Street Journal
Do you know your Medication Adherence Score?
Fair Isaac Co. thinks it does. The company that
created the FICO credit score is branching into new
territory, assembling disparate data in an effort to
better understand a range of human behaviors.
"We know what you're going to do tomorrow," Mark
Greene, Fair Isaac's chief executive, told investors
earlier this year.
The Medication Adherence Score is Fair Isaac's latest
innovation. It aims to gauge the likelihood that a
person will take his prescribed medications. Though
the company is mum about how it crunches numbers,
the score is based partly on how long a person has
lived at the same address and whether he owns a car.
Fair Isaac hopes health-care providers will use the
score to cut costs by targeting email and other
reminders at people who are less likely to take their
"Data is good," Mr. Greene said in an interview. "The
more data we have access to, the more insight we
have." ..... continuing...
Fair Isaac's partners and sometimes-rivals at the
nation's credit bureaus also are delving deeper into
consumers' financial histories to generate tailored
scores, which influence where a person can live and
work and how much they have to pay for insurance.
Experian PLC, the credit-report giant, recently
introduced an Income Insight score, designed to
estimate the income of a credit-card applicant based
on the applicant's credit history. Another Experian
score attempts to gauge the odds that a consumer will
file for bankruptcy.
The takeaway in this article is that credit reporting
agencies are figuring out how to involve every minute
detail of your life to predict what will be the outcome
of any business transaction. It only emphasis the
importance of controlling your credit information.
You must be pro-active in what information is
available about you and who you give information to,
YOU WILL BE AT THE MERCY OF THE CREDIT
Why the credit report dispute process is broken?
Note: This is a great article from Creditcards.com that explains the
process and why it is broken.
Automated dispute system backfires on many consumers
By Kelly Dilworth
A federal law is supposed to guarantee that credit report errors get fixed. So why do some people wind up spending months or even years trying to remove legitimate
errors that are ruining their credit?
Take the case of Rahul Sharma of College Station, Texas. With theFair Credit Reporting Act in place, it should not have taken Sharma six years and a meeting with a
lawyer to get errors ranging from bad Social Security numbers to accounts that weren't his erased from his credit report. But despite the decades-old consumer
protection law, which guarantees consumers the right to get legitimate errors off their reports, Sharma fell through the credit reporting system's cracks.
Representatives across the credit reporting and banking industry say that cases like Rahul Sharma's are rare. "Like anything, [the credit reporting dispute process] is
not a perfect system," says Nessa Feddis, vice president and general counsel at the American Bankers Association. "Sometimes mistakes happen."
However, consumer advocates and attorneys experienced with handling Fair Credit Reporting Act cases say that Sharma's hellish experience dealing with errors
serious enough to deny him credit for more than half a decade is a perfect example of the problems they have been complaining about for years. The automated
credit reporting dispute system used by the three major credit bureaus -- Experian, Equifax and TransUnion -- is broken, they say, and is causing too many consumers
such as Sharma to miss out on the opportunity to apply for affordable credit, get a job in certain industries or avoid rate hikes on everything from apartment rentals to
"The dispute process has absolutely no value whatsoever for consumers," says Leonard Bennett, a consumer lawyer in Newport News, Va., who has repeatedly
testified before Congress about the credit report dispute system.
After a consumer has carefully gathered evidence proving the information isn't theirs and written a detailed dispute explaining the mistake, the credit bureau will
usually compress the letter into a two- to three-digit computer code and a 100-character summary, and send it electronically to another automated system, where it
may be reviewed solely by another computer, according to court documents and interviews with people familiar with the process. The credit bureaus used to toss
consumer evidence as well, but they've since updated the system so that it accepts consumer documents.
If the automated system fails to catch and correct a mistake, consumers can dispute again. However, if they complain too many times, the credit bureaus can legally
dismiss the complaints as frivolous and ignore them, trapping consumers in a nightmare of bad credit they didn't earn. Consumers' only way out? Complain to the
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Or sue.
Bureaus required to investigate disputes By law, any time a consumer says there is something wrong on his or her reports, the credit bureaus are required to
conduct "a reasonable investigation" into the disputed information and remove anything they can't verify as accurate. The reality, however, is that "the credit bureaus
actually spend very little time -- only a few minutes, at best -- investigating a consumer's dispute," says DeVonna Joy, an attorney with the Consumer Justice Law Center
in Big Bend, Wis.
Consumer lawyers say that the short amount of time that credit bureaus spend investigating consumers' disputes is proof the bureaus are skirting the law.
Credit bureaus say the issue is more complicated. They maintain that their systems are compliant with the Fair Credit Reporting Act and they do the best they can with
the resources they have.
"We take our obligations very seriously and complete investigations and disputes as required," says Rod Griffin, director of education at the credit reporting agency
Experian. Lenders wouldn't trust them if they didn't, he says. "Businesses rely on the accuracy of the credit history to make sound decisions and if the credit reports
were rife with inaccuracy, any usefulness or credibility would be undermined and we would provide no useful service," says Griffin. (Story continues below.)