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Should I get all three of my free annual credit reports at the same time?

To get the most out of the free credit report provisions of the FACT Act, when you request your free credit reports from each of the three major credit reporting agencies, stagger them throughout the year rather than getting all three at once. This will give you a series of snapshots of your credit over a period of time.

However, there are circumstances when you might want to get all three free credit reports at once. For example, if you have a major credit purchase on the horizon, such as a home or auto loan, you may want to take a look at all three reports right away so you can correct any errors or inconsistencies before you apply.

Either way, though, you'll want to get your credit reports from all three credit bureaus at some point during the year, since some lenders report credit information to only one or two of the three -- which sometimes means that you will have different information on each credit report. Usually these differences are slight, and usually your credit scores will be very similar. There will be some variation, however.

Not sure where you stand credit-wise? Check your reports and scores online today!

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