When shopping for a home mortgage loan, any other loan or to rent a property, lenders/landlords would like to know your credit score.

Credit score is important in many ways, it not only helps you secure a loan (based on your income qualifications) but also helps to get you better interest rates, if you are shopping for one. Your personal credit history is compiled by credit bureaus which collect information from various sources including banks, retailers and other public records, creating a credit report. Information such as: what credit and debit cards you have, the types of accounts you have at various financial institutions, information about personal loans, mortgages, student loans, etc., is all part of the report.

The report shows the creditors’ names, account numbers, the date accounts were started, the current balance as well as a detailed payment history (for example: how many times you were over 30, 60, or 90 days late in paying bills). Generally, credit reports show information going back six to seven years. The report will also show public information, for example, marriages, divorces, liens, judgments that have been entered against you, bankruptcies, etc.

Read more about credit check

One must check once credit file once a year by calling credit bureaus at no cost. It does not hurt your score.