Watching "Maxed Out" (see my last post) inspired me to pull my credit report. You can get three free credit reports per year, one from each of the three agencies. You need to go to www.annualcreditreport.com to receive the actual free reports as there are many scams, just google "free credit report" to see a few examples.
After reviewing my report with nothing out of the ordinary I decided to get my credit score as well which costs an additional $7.95 from TransUnion. It came back that I am in the 43rd percentile, much below where it seems I should be based on my faultless payment history. So I sought out a second opinion. Over at MyFICO.com (this is the big dog of credit scores) you can receive your FICO score free for thirty days (make sure to cancel or it is $90/year after the free trial). I signed up for the trial and found out that their credit score ranks me in the 85th percentile. So what's the deal?
Based on the same information one company lists me as a risky borrower and another rates me as "GREAT." If I were in the market for a home loan the difference between the two scores could easily make for a several hundred dollar increase in the monthly payment (nearly $200,000 over the life of the loan). I don't know what is weighing down the TransUnion score as they wanted more money to analyze my results. The MyFICO came with a break down which listed the one negative on my account a new line of credit within the last year (hooking up gas and electricty to our apartment rates negatively on my credit!?!)
As I stated earlier: the credit score is bull shit.