How to Request Credit Scores

Your credit score dictates how easy or difficult it will be for you to obtain credit. Perhaps even more important, your score can also affect the interest rate you will pay to lenders and credit card companies. The lower your credit score, the more interest you will likely pay and the harder it will be to get credit. Although the three main credit-reporting agencies are required by law to supply a free copy of your credit report every 12 months upon request, they can charge you a fee to see your score.

Free Report

Visit www.annualcreditreport.com. The three credit-reporting agencies—Experian, Equifax and TransUnion—set up this website for consumers to order their free annual credit report. You can use it for purchasing credit scores. You can also visit the three agencies' websites separately to purchase your credit score (see Resources).

Provide your name, current mailing address, Social Security number and date of birth. You'll also need to give your previous address if you have lived at your current residence for less than two years.

Select one or more of the three credit-reporting agencies. You'll be redirected to the agency's site to answer further security questions and see offers to purchase your credit score.

Pay the fee to see your credit score.

Tips

  • Your credit score is determined by your bill-paying history, the number and type of accounts you have, late payments, collection actions, outstanding debt and the age of your accounts. The Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) website has tips for improving your credit score (see References).