Buying a home is the most expensive purchase you will make in your life – so it is worth spending time on deciding what amenities you want and how they relate to what you can afford. More importantly, check your credit report and credit scores through the three major credit reporting agencies, which are Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. You do not want to apply for a mortgage for a house that is practically your dream home and find out that there are errors in your credit reports – which cannot be fixed overnight!
The first step you should take is to order a copy of your credit report from each of the aforementioned agencies. Under Federal law, consumers are entitled to receive one free credit report from each agency in a twelve month period. This report can be ordered online at www.annualcreditreport.com. It can also be ordered by phone by calling 1-877-322-8228 or you can download a free request form and mail it to:
Annual Credit Report Request Service
P. O. Box 105821
Atlanta, GA 30348-5281.
If you find an error on your credit report, contact the creditor and try to resolve the problem. If this cannot be done to your satisfaction, write a letter to the reporting agency. Enclose a copy of the credit report with an explanation of each dispute with supporting paperwork. NEVER send originals! All paperwork should be sent by certified mail with return receipt requested.
The credit reporting agency is required to make an investigation of your dispute by contacting the creditor. If the creditor cannot prove that the information they provided is accurate, they must remove the entry from your credit report and send you an amended copy. If an error in your favor is discovered, you have the right to request that a corrected copy of your credit report be sent to anyone who received the incorrect report within the past six months.