'Money: It's Personal' — Credit reports and credit scores

By Ivan Herrera - Web Producer, Valerie Gomez - Video Editor

SAN ANTONIO - You may want to start paying off some of the things you put off during the holidays last year with credit cards, but before you do that, you'll want to take a look at your credit score to help you find out which credit card works for your score.

Credit reports contain information about bill payment history, the debt you’ve taken out and other financial information. They even contain any lawsuit information and show if you’ve filed for bankruptcy.

Consumers are able to request credit reports from the three reporting agencies: Experian, Transunion and Equifax, for free once every 12 months by visiting Annualcreditreport.com

Your credit report helps determine your credit score, which helps lenders determine if you’re a good candidate for loans or credit.

Your credit score can also be used by rental and insurance companies.

Payment history, length of credit history and number of accounts are just some of the factors used to calculate your credit score.

You can get your credit score from a number of sources, including your credit card company if you already have a credit card. People can also pay to get their credit score from the three major credit reporting agencies.

There are apps such as Credit Karma and Freecreditreport.com, which give you a free credit score and credit report.

If you believe your personal information has been exposed during a data breach, using a credit freeze will restrict access to your credit report. It can help prevent thieves from opening fraudulent accounts.

To learn more about credit reports and credit scores, click here.

“Money: It’s Personal” is a new series on KSAT’s News at 9 that breaks down personal finance topics. If you have a suggestion on what types of topics to explain, click here.

Copyright 2019 by KSAT - All rights reserved.