5 Negative Items On Your Credit Report Costing You Thousands

By Ginger Dean

If you're like most, then you're not checking your credit score on a yearly basis, let alone on a monthly basis. Yet, the score is being updated monthly, which could be costing you thousands of dollars.

Understanding the credit reporting system and how this affects you in the long run is key to securing and maintaining a good credit score.
We'll start with the basics: obtaining and reviewing a copy of your credit report.
First, you should know that there are three credit reporting agencies: Experian, Transunion and Equifax.

Once you get a copy of your report, you might see that your creditors report everything to each agency and, in some cases, the creditor may report to only one or two of the three. Don't be alarmed, this is totally normal.

How Do I Get A Copy Of My Credit Report?

Annual Credit Report is a free service for consumers that offers consumers the opportunity to check their credit report.

What Should I Look For?

  • Incorrect late payments
  • Balances reported incorrectly
  • Duplicate accounts
  • Incorrect public or collection accounts
  • Accounts that don't belong to you
  • Late payments

Also, check your name and addresses. Make sure the basic information is correct. Then you want to look at the inquiries, checking that the correct inquiries are being recorded. If inquiries are listed that you did not authorize then you may need to dispute these as they can reduce your score depending on how many were processed within a certain period of time.

Late Payments

Are there any late payments? These are usually in color coded format with late payments in yellow or red. Make sure they are correct, that is you were indeed late for each month that you were listed as late.


Check the collections section for any collection accounts you have have that are active or obsolete. We will discuss obsolete items in greater detail later. If this sections has items listed, take the time to review the account history based on your knowledge and determine the accuracy of the reporting of this account. Make note of the amount, date of first delinquency and when this item is scheduled to be deleted.

Public Filings

Rinse wash and repeat. Check the item, amounts etc and determine if the listing is correct.
Think about the last time you checked your credit report. If it's been a while then you'll want to get an updated copy from all three bureaus and check for accuracy.