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It varies in the US state by state.
Unless state law forces the credit bureaus
to provide a freebie, it costs about $9 from
each of the three providers. You need all 3
to do a proper review. There are some circumstances
that allow you to receive a freebie, such as
being defrauded, check the sites for details.
This is federally mandated, so you only have
to check one of them.
Companies offer "FREE" credit checks from all
three, but as usual there is a catch. If, after
a period of time, you don't actively cancel,
you are charged ~$70 per year for their services.
They count on people forgetting to cancel, and
since the amount is buried on a credit statement,
people will forget about it, and just keep paying.
In my cynical world, the whole thing is nothing
more than a scam to separate people from their
money, legally. They take bad information in
easily and it is very hard to get it corrected.
Why? It's not in their interest for large numbers
of people to have good credit, for then nobody
would need their services.
Bad credit rating can provide two scenarios:
1) Will work hard to pay off debt
2) Won't work hard, will allow dept to accumulate
The report itself is insufficient to determine,
so it has little value in my mind, but it's
not my mind that counts, it's theirs. Play the
game if you have to, fight it when you can.
Jeff provided the following:
> As has been suggested in previous posts,
> you don't have to pay to see your credit
> information, and getting a little knowledge
> on how to read it can save you a lot of money.
> From what I understand, everyone is entitled
> to at least one free copy of their credit
> report a year (here in Georgia, you can
> request two). Also, if you've been denied
> credit, you can request a free copy, as well.
CB - Burned by ID theft once but it was minor.
If it had been major, it would have take more
than 3 months to get things straightened out.
The store that got ripped off didn't even
attempt to go after the perpetrators.
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