A direct payday lender will not be reading your credit report, but all your other creditors will. Some people have never even seen their credit report. Knowing how to read this important piece of information will allow you to see what everyone else does.
What Does a Payday Lender or Anyone See on a Report?
Did you know that you can get a free credit report every 12 months? Different websites will provide an ongoing free credit bureau check. One that I use and will receive emails if something on my report changes is Credit Karma. Everyone can have access to this kind of information, to keep track of, and have an opportunity to correct any inaccurate information that is on the report. Credit reports can be confusing to read if you have never seen one and don’t know of the reported information.
Analyze the Information Intently for Accuracy
Print out your report so you can highlight or write notes in the margins as you review the information. The first section you will want to read through is all of your identifying information. You are looking for any inaccuracies with your name, current address, social security number, your birth date, and your spouse’s name if you are married. Any errors found in this section could create problems with accurate reporting.
What Am I Looking For?
The bulk of your report will be about your credit history. This section will list out who your creditors are and your history with each one. Additionally, it will tell you when you first opened the account, what the average balance is, and if the balance went up or down since the report was last run. This section will take some time to go through, but it will be worth every minute if you find errors. Highlight any information you believe to be wrong or fraudulent to come back to it later.
Information Enclosed May Include:
- Company name identifies the creditor.
- Account number-This is helpful, especially if you have multiple accounts with the same company.
- The name of the individual who is responsible for the account is listed. If you are the sole user, joint account, authorized signer are examples of what may be listed next to the user.
- The date the account was opened, how many months the account has been reported and when the last activity was on the account.
- High credit is reported, giving a fast glimpse as to the highest amount charged, or if a loan, the original balance. If the amount is an installment loan, or the number of months for the term will be listed also.
- The current balance at the time of reporting.
- Past due amounts at the time of the reporting.
- Type of account and the timeliness of payment. A current or paid as agreed status shows a zero, numbers will progress up to nine to show how well you paid on your account.
- The last piece of information is the date on which the creditor updated the account.
A Direct Payday Lender Does Not Report a Defaulted Payday Loan to the Credit Company
Any accounts which an individual has defaulted on within the last seven years will be referred to a collections agency and reported to the collection accounts section. Listed is the name of the collection agency, the amount owed, and contact information. Any information in this section that does not look familiar to you should be reported by phone and by letter. Contact the collections agency as well. You may have been mistaken and do owe the amount. At that time, a payment arrangement can be made over the phone. When contacting the agency because the debt does not belong to you, request something in writing from the collector, which will also be sent to the credit bureau.
Last Part of the Credit Report
There will be a public records section that will display any history the courthouse may have on file. Additional information will include former addresses and past employers. The last section is the inquiry section. Here will be a list of all companies who have looked into your credit. Only companies who have gotten your written authorization are allowed to check your history.
Above all, responsible payday lenders continue to promote responsible lending and borrowing. After all, a direct payday lender will not make inquiries about your credit history nor will they run a report to approve you for a loan.