Poor Credit Barrier to Quality Housing – Accessing Your Credit Report

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Here in the Housing Consumer Education Center we find, frequently that quality housing options are hard to come by due to poor credit.

Naturally, a property owner or management company wants to ensure that a prospective tenant has a positive debt payment history and can meet their monthly financial responsibilities.
Recently, we started to pull credit reports with our Representative Payee clients as a means of determining debt liability. This process has proven to be rather successful. In many cases, their credit history was not as poor as they had though and/or the debt was not as great as they had imagined.

In this spirit we offer the following information about how easy (and free) it is to pull obtain your credit report on an annual basis.

Every consumer is entitled to one FREE credit report per year from each of the three major credit bureaus – Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. Consumers can either receive all three reports at once or stagger them throughout the year.

A credit report contains information on where you live, how you pay your bills, and whether you’ve been sued, arrested, or filed for bankruptcy. Nationwide consumer reporting companies sell the information in your report to creditors, insurers, employers, and other businesses that use it to evaluate your applications for credit, insurance, employment, or renting a home.

We receive many complaints from consumers who use websites found on the internet or heard on TV to receive their free credit report. Most consumers allege they were automatically enrolled in a credit reporting service for a fee, or they were charged for their “free” credit report. Your Better Business Bureau recommends visiting www.AnnualCreditReport.com to receive your free credit report. You must provide your name, address, date of birth, and Social Security number in order to receive your report. Consumers can also receive their free credit report by calling toll-free, 1-877-322-8228.

It’s important to receive your credit report once a year to check for any suspicious activity or any inaccuracies.

Source: Better Business Bureau

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