Most of our readers know that checking your credit score and history is one of the most important tasks to keep your finances in order. Keeping up with your credit report with enable you to notice errors, fraud or even predict if it’s worth applying for a loan or credit card.
However that’s not the case for the average American. More than one-third of American adults – roughly 35% – have never requested their credit reports. That’s never during their lifetime.
Two age groups were the mail culprits for bringing down the average. Senior citizens (44%) and Millennials (41%) have never seen their credit report. Moreover, about one-seventh of adults wait more than a year between credit checks, which is still troubling.
“Monitoring your credit goes well beyond scanning a three-digit number,” Bankrate analyst Jeanine Skowronski says in a statement. “Americans need to thoroughly review their credit reports for errors or signs of fraud.”
People also need to educate themselves when it comes to their finances and their credit history.
“They also need to understand what factors, like missed payments or high debt to available credit ratios, are driving their credit in order to improve it,” says Skowronski.
You are entitled to a free credit report from TransUnion, Equifax and Experian, and can receive one by going to AnnualCreditReport.com or Credit Sesame.
To get a sense of how much mistakes can potentially cost you, check out this cost of debt calculator by Credit.com. A New York man in his late-30’s with fair credit will spend around $603,000 on interest payments over his lifetime. That same man with good credit will spend around $80,000 less.
Mistakes on your credit report can lead to lower credit scores, and are likely to blight your credit history unless you take action. Which will be hard to do unless you check your report. So do yourself a favor and check your credit report regularly. [Bankrate]