In the age of increasing financial literacy, finally consumers are getting the opportunity to peek behind the curtain and see what types of credit scores lenders are actually using to approve or deny applications. Due to new credit and financial requirements, lenders are now required to provide you with a detailed disclosure on your current credit standing.
|Shortly after you apply for credit, you will get a notice that tells you your credit score and information about how your score compares with other consumers’ scores. If you do not have a credit score—for example, if you never had credit before—the lender’s notice would identify the particular credit bureau it used to get information.
Below is a list of what is now required by lenders to disclose to consumers:
- The actual numerical score used in the adverse decision (new requirement)
- The range of possible scores under the model used (new requirement)
- All key factors that adversely affected the credit score
– This legislation mandates the delivery of 5 factor codes (when applicable). The notice must include the top 4 and then a 5th when inquiries play a negative part in the score calculation (new requirement)
- The date on which the credit score was created
- The name of the entity that provided the score
These new notices give you the opportunity to check the accuracy of the information in your credit report and dispute any information that you believe is incorrect. If you receive a notice, I suggest taking the following steps:
• Review the notice. Read it carefully to make sure you understand how your credit report or credit score may affect the price you pay for credit. Ask the lender to explain anything in the notice that you do not understand.
• Get a copy of your credit report. Go to www.annualcreditreport.com and get your free credit report by following the instructions on your notice. Review the information carefully.
• Dispute any errors. If you find errors in your credit report, you may dispute the information and request that the information be deleted or corrected.
These new requirements and notices help to minimize the confusion regarding credit scores and lending capabilities. These are also to help you better understand YOUR specific credit standings.