There are many players in the credit game. In order to establish LuxuriousCREDIT it is in your best interest to familiarize yourself with each of them. Creditors, credit reporting bureaus, credit repair agencies, state authorities, Congress, and the Federal Trade Commission all have a role to play. Each of these players is in the game to either make money, protect a means of making money, or regulate the credit industry. However, not one of the players mentioned above, yes even credit repair agencies, has the single interest of doing only what is best for you, the individual consumer of credit.
Now that the truth is out it should be clear that every person who uses credit should make it their own business to become familiar with the agencies that influence his or her credit reputations. Knowledge is the key and primary means for the individual consumer to empowerment and economic strength. Let's talk a little more about the major players mentioned above.
For the purposes of this discussion, we will define a creditor as any company, organization, or institution that permits you to use future income to purchase goods and services now. A creditor could be the issuer of a credit card, the company that holds your mortgage loan, or the bank that helps finance your auto loan. In exchange for advancing you the resources to purchase goods or services, creditors expect repayment with interest. Creditors have an acute interest in our payment habits. The want to know if you will pay on time, if you will pay the full amount, and if other creditors have had favorable or unfavorable experiences with you in the past? Many creditors depend on another major player in the credit game known as the credit reporting services to furnish them with information about your credit history.
Credit Reporting Services
With over 1,200 credit reporting services in the U.S. there are a myriad of ways for creditors to gather information about your payment and credit history. However, there are three in particular that every credit consumer should get to know: Experian, Equifax, and Trans Union. These are national and international agencies that collect credit history information on hundreds of millions of American credit consumers. This information is provided to them by individual creditors like department stores, banks and mortgage companies. These are known as "subscribers" in credit bureau jargon. Public information such as bankruptcy filings as well as other legal actions are also collected by the credit reporting bureaus. Creditors purchase complete credit history reports from the bureaus on individual consumers.
These credit histories are used as a way of evaluating the creditworthiness of a consumer when he or she applies for credit. Other agencies or individuals, including employers, insurance agencies, and law enforcement agencies, can also purchase credit information from the bureaus. Affiliated with each of the three major credit bureaus are smaller bureaus that collect credit history information on a regional scale. These regional agencies connect with one of the big three bureaus and store their information on the national bureau's database. Localized reporting agencies specializing in mortgages service the real estate market and provide credit reports for real estate lending purposes with information provided from the major credit bureaus as well.
Credit Repair Agencies
Credit repair agencies are companies that work to assist clients to positively influence their credit rating. This is done using a number of industry strategies and techniques. One strategy is to attempt to have negative items removed from your credit report by taking advantage of "loopholes" in the law that the average layperson or consumer may not be aware of. Credit repair agencies, for the most part, are businesses and therefore do charge a fee to perform services. While many credit repair agencies are legitimate, as with any industry, some may be questionable. Ultimately, no credit repair agency can do any more to effect your credit than you can do yourself. Furthermore, no credit repair agency can remove negative information from your credit report if it is accurate.