I Did Get My reportGetting Out...

Updated on February 07, 2012
K.C. asks from Saint Charles, MO
12 answers

Hello Everyone!! I just have a quick question... My boyfriend and I have been looking around for apartments but we are not sure about our credit score... I got my free report but I have no idea how to read it... Also we are using his name to rent the apartment and he has had some problems with his credit ( mine is worse ) A cell phone bill when he was 18 and a bad bank account when he was 18 and he is now 25... How will al this weigh on his credit?? And is there anywhere I can get a free credit score?? And unfortunatly not a lot of places take co signers... Feeling a little defeated... Do you thnk we have a chance at getting out?

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So What Happened?

I did get my report but is says $0 by everything and I know that's not true.. I have had credit card problems when I was 18 so I know something has to be on there.... I am 24 now and it says the average score for my zip code but says I don't own score product and need to upgrade

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answers from Seattle on

Try FreeCreditScore.com

And yes there is hope that you can get out. If you both or him have steady jobs and income then there are always places that will let you rent an apartment anyways.

You might just have to look and ask around some.

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Boston on

Hi! Something you did when you were 18 should have fallen off your report by now (somethings are four somethings are seven yrs). If you are, and have been, current on everything you should be okay. I'm a landlord, a mean, nasty *&6@%. Why? because of how many times I've been burned by tenants. I have stories... Like the ones that came with their beautiful newborn and then moved in with their five children, into a two bedroom. By the time they left the house was uninhabitable. His last landlord was happy to tell me how good they were because he wanted them out so badly. Oh, I've rented to my last sob story, now I want LOTS of stuff, upfront. Why am I telling you this? Certainly not to make you feel bad but to give you an idea of what will sway me to help you. You sound so sweet. Take your credit report to an officer at your bank and ask them if they will take a minute to explain it all to you and show you where, if any, problems are. Then find some (not one) people who would be willing to vouch for you--- not a family member. Your boss, his boss, a clergyman would be great, the head of a group you volunteer with, if you are in school a professor, bank officer. Honestly I am not listening to any of your friends or family or present landlord (I learned that the hard way). Oh, and I will check. If you have anything "unpleasant" online get rid of it! That includes Facebook. I honestly don't like being this way about tenants but we've been burned so many times it is all we can do. I know there are good tenants out there. I'm really a nice person just put in a tough place too many times. Find yourself someplace lovely and take good care of it and your landlord will never let you leave... Good luck!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Phoenix on

Most times your bank will do a free one time credit report for you. They can also teach you how to read your credit report. Make sure the apartment you both get is something each of you can afford on your own in case your relationship doesn't work out. The credit report for the apartment complex is only to let them know how responsible you are. If your income is enough to handle the rent, then there shouldn't be no problem getting an apartment. I would suggest 'both' of you sign a lease agreement. That way both of you are protected under it. :-)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

Don't use freecreditscore.com or any other commercial site. They are generally scams. Go to this government site (link below) to see what/how you can get your score. Basically, there are three agencies that provide scores, and they are required to give you your score for free once a year. I would suggest getting only one score from one agency each year.


The scores vary a bit by agency, who have slightly different methods of calculating it. Getting your score can also be helpful in finding if you have been the victim of identity theft.

Good luck!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Hartford on

You need a session with a financial counselor. Talk to someone in your bank to help you get started. It's a worthwhile investment of time. There's no rush in getting an apartment if it means getting your finances in order and taking time to improve your credit.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boston on

As you have already figured out, the report that you can get for free on an annual basis DOES NOT include your score. To get your score, you have to pay for it or have someone run it for you (like a bank). I have used freecreditscore.com (it's not actually free) and have found them to be a reputable company with good service. You can sign up for a monthly service to get the score for free now but BE SURE to cancel the service or you will be billed $14.95 per month going forward. If you have an account at a local bank, though, start there and see if they'll help you. They'll interpret your score for you and tell you how things look.

As others have mentioned, be careful about the names on the lease. You don't want to be screwed out of a place to live if you break up.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Charlotte on

Try reading this:
I typed in "how to read a credit report" in google. If this is too complicated, look for more to read to help.

Something 7 years old goes off a credit report, so his bad history won't haunt him for the rest of his days.

Good luck!


answers from Washington DC on

I have credit monitoring through my bank. It is $12.95 a month and I can get all 3 of my scores whenever I want. I get email updates with changes and new accounts or inquiries. I recommend to go through your bank because that is probably the most valid.


answers from Phoenix on

You said you already got your report so it tells you what your credit score is right on there. Also, in this economy, you can still rent but its likely you will need a larger down payment or an extra month down if your credit is poor. Good luck!



answers from Chicago on

You can get free copies of your credit report, one from each credit reporting agency, once per year. A credit report does not tell you your credit score, just what lines of credit you have under your social securtiy number and their status (paid, late, collections, etc.) Your credit score can be determined by many different formulas, and it just depends who is checking it what method they will use. Not everyone will interpret a credit score the same way either. I'm pretty sure you can get your score included with a credit report for a small fee, or you can sign up for a credit monitoring service and keep an eye on it that way.

As for the past and how it affects your credit today, the big picture usually matters more than isolated events. Are you/he always late paying bills, or spending up to/past your credit limits? Those types of activity are the biggest red flags to potential landlords, not what happened 7 years ago. It might still affect your score though.

All that said, you definitely have a chance at getting out. Keep looking around, there are probably a lot of places that might not even check your credit. I'm not sure how the housing is down there, but here in Chicago there are two- and three-flats where landlords live on one level and rent out the others, and lots of them don't check credit. For the ones that do check, just be honest about your past and go from there. Don't give up!



answers from Dallas on

Banks/lenders use about three different resources to determine credit scores. One I am really familiar with is Experian.
By law if someone turns you down for credit or extending a higher line of credit on a current card you are entitled to a FREE credit score report.
Also, if I am not mistaken, each person is entitled to one per year(?? does anyone else on this site know the facts aroudn that?)
Anyways. contact Experian. Request a free credit report and your score will be on there including range it falls and what you can do to improve it based on your unique profile.
EDIT - if you do not have a three digit number on your report you received - then it is not a complete report. SO you have two options - get a free and complete report or call the company who sent you the report you are looking at and ask them to help you interpret the information.
From my experience it was never difficult to find the data if it was there:) Hope that helps clear up any of the advice I initially gave above.



answers from San Francisco on

Just keep looking for the right place and owner/landlord. If you have first and last months rent and perhaps a deposit, that would be a good thing. But even if you don't and are perfectly honest with the owner/landlord, they might give you a chance.

I would suggest looking at the smaller complexes not the ones with all the bells and whistles because those are the ones that WILL want a credit check.

If you find a place you like and can get the name of the owner/landlord, sit down a write them a letter indroducing yourselves. Your names, ages, where you both work, name of your bank and if you have some ligitimate references, i.e. your employer, minister, teacher/professor etc., that would be willing to give a character reference, include their names and phone numbers. Tell them the truth about your past and your present and how much you would like to be a good tenant.

It's worked for me and I've been in my place going on eleven years.


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