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University of Utah Library Guides

Personal Finance: Credit Resources

This guide offers resources and tools related to personal finance.

Credit Reports

Three companies, Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax, create credit reports. Federal law allows you to request a free credit report from all three companies every 12 months. You can get your credit scores in three different ways:

By law, each of the major three credit report agencies must provide you with a free copy of your credit report once every 12 months. These three agencies created AnnualCreditReport.com to centralize the process.

You can access your credit report in one of three ways:

Online: The quickest way to access your free credit report go to https://www.annualcreditreport.com. You will access your credit report directly from the website.

Telephone: Call 1-877-322-8228 and follow the instructions.

Mail: Follow the instructions here to download the request form. Print it and then fill it out. Mail the completed form to:

Annual Credit Report Request Service

P.O. Box 105281

Atlanta, GA 30348-5281

Note: Be wary of other websites advertising free credit reports--many are fee-based services.

Understanding Credit Scores

Credit score is determined by the amount of money one owes, how long one has owed it, length of credit history, and the types of credit used. Lenders use your credit score to decide if they will offer you a loan or a credit card and to determine what interest rates you recieve. Resources on this page will help you understand how your credit score is calculated and what you can do to improve it

Building A Better Credit Score

The following sources offer tips about how to improve your credit score.

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