By Arun Ramamurthy
Credit profile is an integral part of our financial life. Achievement of our pecuniary objectives depends, to a certain extent, upon our credit profile. Represented by the three digit numerical expression called credit score, it plays an important role in the access to loans and credit. Therefore, it becomes imperative for one and all to check upon their credit scores on a regular basis. The good news is that now credit scores and credit reports are available for free and one will not be required to shell out anything to access the information that pertains to one’s credit health. Let us check on the options available today on this front.
Option 1 : Direct report from the credit bureau
As per the Reserve Bank of India directive, all four credit bureaus in India viz. Credit Information Bureau of India (popularly known as CIBIL), Equifax, Experian and Crif Highmark are to provide a free credit report to all individuals every year. So one can approach any of these bureaus and obtain a report that will have details on all past and existing trade lines, credit score and personal information.
Each of the bureaus has a different process for extending a free credit report. One can obtain the free CIBIL report post answering a few authenticating questions. The process is online and takes a few minutes. In case the authentication fails, one would be required to send physical KYC documents to CIBIL.
For a report from Equifax, one would need to download the mobile app and create an account. It may take about 24 hours for one to get the report into registered email inbox. All that is required to be done is follow the directions for authentication.
For an Experian report, one would need to apply for a voucher code that would be received via email. One received (usually in 24 hours) one can obtain the report in minutes.
As far Crif Highmark is concerned, one needs to create an account with Crif Highmark. Upon authentication, a link is received at registered email ID. One would be able to get the complete report upon successful authentication.
Option 2 : Report through a third party
While obtaining report through any of the bureaus is quite simple, it may not be of much benefit to the consumer. Comprehending it may be as difficult as any medical report. There are a few options today, where some fintechs like freescoreindia, Credit Sudhaar and a few others are not only extending the credit bureau report free of cost but are also giving analytics along with it. This analysis will help the individual to have a clarity on the areas that he needs to work upon to be able to improve and maintain a good credit health.
The process to obtain the report and analysis is as simple as obtaining a report from any bureau and is just a few clicks away.
So go ahead, apply for your credit report for free today and embark on the journey of leading a better credit life.
(The author is a Director of Credit Sudhaar)