Financial Tips | Debt Management

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Is a “Free” Credit Report Really Free?

The answer to this question is, YES. A free credit report really is free, you just have to know where to get it. Federal law requires that the credit reporting bureaus provide you with one free credit report per year. Therefore, by law, you can get your credit report for free.

The best place to exercise this right is by going to This website allows you free access to all three of your credit reports (by all three, I mean your credit reports from Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) once per year. The process is very simple and very safe. In order for you to access your credit reports, you have to answer security questions based on certain credit and/or revolving accounts that you own.

Note that federal law only requires that these companies give you a copy of your credit report, not your credit scores. Therefore, if you want your credit scores, you are going to have to pay for them.

When you obtain your credit report, make sure that you print a copy for your records. Even if your credit report is 20+ pages, it is worth the printer ink to have a copy of your credit report. Look at your credit report and make sure that no inaccuracies exist. If you find an inaccuracy, you need to dispute it so that your credit score is not negatively affected.

Get you free credit report, check your accounts, and maintain your credit.

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