Reading a credit report from TransUnion Canada

Before applying for a truck loan in Calgary, or any type of loan, it would be wise to request a copy of your credit report. Your credit report is a record of your credit history. This report is created when you first apply for credit. Your credit report will hold such information like when you opened your first credit account, whether or not you miss payments, pay on time or go over your credit limit, and how much money you currently owe. Your credit report comes from a credit bureau, who has legal access to all of this information. An example of what your credit report from TransUnion Canada may look like is available here. A credit report is not that difficult to read, as long as you understand the basic information that is present on it.

First and foremost, your credit report will contain your personal information, verifying that all of the information on the credit report belongs to you. It will consist of your name, date of birth, current address, previous addresses and the days in which the addresses were updated, your telephone number, your current employer and the date in which this was updated. There may also be an option for a consumer statement. This block will only be filled in if you as the consumer gives the credit bureau a statement, such as if there was an error on a previous credit report. Next, you will see a brief summary of your credit. This will include how many account you have and have had, it will show which accounts are open and which are closed (closing a credit account will have a drastic negative impact on your credit score), what the balances on the credit accounts are, how many inquiries were made in the last two years, how many payments have been made on the accounts, how many delinquents you have, how many public records you have and an derogatory amount. A delinquent account refers to an account that you have stopped making payments on.  A derogatory amount refers to credit that wasn’t paid for as initially agreed. Foreclosures, repossessions and bankruptcy are a few examples. Some public records that will show up on your credit report will be bankruptcy claims, judgements lost in court, and tax liens.

After this brief summary, your credit report will show an account history, in which your credit report will have a legend available for you. Your account history will show what loans, store cards and credit cards you have open or have previously opened. The account number, balance of the account, the date it was opened, the date in which the report was requested, what the pay status is, the responsibility of the account (individual or business), the payment of the account and what type of account it is are all stated under the name of the account, such as TD/ Visa or BMO/MasterCard. The condition of the account states whether it is open or closed. The type of account can refer to a revolving account or a fixed account, which means you can continue to use the card, or it is closed once the limit is met. Under this information, you will see a record of your payment history for the past two years. Though credit information is kept from the past 7 years, the more important information is within the past two years. Above each month from the past two years since you have requested a credit report, you will have a symbol. This can be blank, white, green with an ”OK” above it, a “30”, a “60”, a “90”, a “120”, a “150”, a “PP”, a “RF”, or a “CO”. The legend will explain what all of these mean, but you ideally want a green “OK” above every month.

You can request your credit report anytime you wish. You can order your credit report through mail, fax, telephone, in person, or even online. If you order your credit report by mail, telephone, in person or by fax, you will not have to pay a fee, whereas you will have to pay a fee if you request your credit report online. In order for you to receive your credit report, you may need two pieces of identification and your SIN. You will have to contact either Equifax Canada or TransUnion Canada, whichever bureau you are registered with, for their mailing address, telephone number or website address.