Understanding your credit history
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What is a credit history?
- A record showing a person’s ability to pay debts.
- It shows your:
It is composed of a credit report and a credit score.The credit report contains information on your:
- credit accounts
- bill payment details
- borrowing habits
It will also show:
- bank accounts
- credit cards
- lines of credit and loans
Your credit score shows how much credit risk you represent.
- records of bankruptcy or a court decision relating to credit
- issuance of a “bad” check
- a list of people and companies that have asked about your credit
When you are given a credit rating, it shows:
- They range from 300 to 900.
- The higher the score, the better.
- A high score means less risk.
Equifax and TransUnion are the credit bureaus in Canada.
- the score
- how you compare to the rest of Canada
- your rating of creditworthiness: very poor, poor, fair, good, or very good
Why is a good credit history important?
- Institutions will check it when:
It can also be checked when you are applying:Your credit history will show:
- you buy a house
- you buy a car
- starting a business
- if someone has tried to steal your identity
- if someone opened credit cards or loans in your name
Factors that affect your credit score:
- How long you have had credit.
- History of making payments:
- Do you carry a balance on your credit cards?
- Have you missed payments?
Number of inquiries about your credit history
- Are you close to your credit limit?
Types of credit you are using.Any record of bankruptcy or debts sent to a collection agency.
- This shows if you are trying to get more credit.
How to get a credit report
- A free credit report once a year is good to:</li
- monitor your credit
- check for errors
- check for signs of identity theft
- A free credit report does not include your credit score.
- A credit score report can be ordered for a fee.
- Ask for a credit file disclosure from Equifax Canada or a consumer disclosure from TransUnion Canada.
There is a fee if you want to get it online.Check the FCAC page for contact numbers.
- Get it by mail, fax, telephone or in person.
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Download a guide at the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada site.
Contact the Community Financial Counselling Services for financial/credit counselling services.
Go to the Financial Literacy Resource website for a list of financial literacy programs and services in Manitoba.
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