Free credit reports – what you need to know

Mortgage Tips Robert Ganzhorn 16 Apr

I’m seeing a lot more of those free credit reports from Credit Karma and Borrowell from clients. Requesting them is a good thing but there are some items you should know to clear up possible confusion.

There are two credit reporting agencies in Canada. Your credit score can (will likely) be different from each of them. Its due to the manner that each of them uses to calculate your score.

Of the two, Equifax is the one predominantly used by lenders. Not that Transunion isn’t used by lenders but nowhere near as much as Equifax is. Borrowell uses Equifax and Credit Karma uses Transunion. The moral here is to pull both – not only can the score be different but so can the actual content of the report.

And finally, you likely think that all credit bureau pulls are the same if taken from the same bureau. That’s just not the case. The credit bureau that you request is different than the bureau that I request which is once again different from the bureaus that the lenders request. The credit score can also vary between each report as well.

So what good is a free pull from these services? Although the score can be different from the lender bureau requests it still gives you a general idea of where your score sits and most importantly if the content reported on your bureau is accurate. Believe me I see a lot of errors and missing items when I request client bureaus.

If you have questions please feel free to reach out to me directly.