Consumers with a credit history have separate credit reports compiled by the three nationwide consumer-reporting agencies. By reviewing these documents, a lender can tell how responsible an individual is with their finances and help them determine whether to extend additional credit. Just as your credit report isn’t determined by one piece of information, your report is just one aspect that a lender considers when reviewing your loan application. Other things that come into play include your level of income, length of employment and the type of loan you’re requesting.

Your report is a compilation of your personal financial activity and can be viewed by any company or individual who has a legitimate business need. You give your permission to access your report when you sign a contract for a loan or credit card application and when the request is related to credit, collections, rental of a home or apartment or when applying for employment or insurance.

Here are five institutions that check your credit report:

Banks, Credit Unions and Other Current Creditors
It should be no surprise that your current lenders would check your credit report, especially if you’re having trouble making payments. In addition to late payments, creditors check your report to see how you’re managing your other accounts; if there are negative issues, they may raise your interest rate, cut your credit limit or close the account. Banks and other financial institution that you have applied for a loan will also be interested in your credit report. Depending on what they find, you will be denied or approved and the interest rate will be in direct contrast to the condition of your report.

Residential Landlords
This comes a surprise to many people looking to rent or lease a new home. Landlords need to be assured that their tenants are able and willing to pay the rent. So their examination of your credit report will disclose trouble spots like foreclosures or evictions.

Insurance Companies
Renter’s, homeowner’s and automobile insurers will consider the information on your credit report as part of the criteria for determining if they will provide you with insurance. In addition, they will decide the rate you will pay and the amount of coverage; poor report will mean higher rates and less coverage, for example.

Employment Agencies and Potential Employers
Another surprise to many is the fact that your current and potential employers and employment agencies will check your credit report when making hiring and promotion decisions. Bankruptcies, late payments, and high debt levels could prevent you from getting a job, a raise or a promotion.

Debt Collection Services
When a delinquent account is sold to a debt collection agency, the first thing they will do, is check your credit report. They will be collecting as much information about you as possible, including your address, phone number, employee contacts and other account information to determine your overall financial condition.

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