Credit reports contain information about who you are, including name, address, birthdate and social security number. It also will tell you how much you owe, to whom you owe it, if you have any court judgments or bankruptcies, and anyone who has requested a copy of your report.
Not all lenders/creditors will report to all three agencies, so some items may not appear on your report from one bureau, but will from another.
Credit reports are used to help lenders determine whether or not they can approve you for a loan or for a credit card. They also may be used to determine employment and whether you are able to rent an apartment.
Depending on your credit history, these reports will determine what type of loans you qualify for, what your interest rate will be and if you will need a co-signer.
Negative items on your credit history such as late payments remain on your report for an average of seven years. Bankruptcies can stay on your report longer.
Judgments, lawsuits and criminal convictions are other harmful items on your credit report.