While you can go online and pay for a copy of your credit report, we recommend that you obtain a free copy of your report. There are five ways to get a free credit report (and one strategy we don’t recommend):
- online from your bank (currently only Royal Bank and Scotiabank offer this free service to their customers)
- by mail
- by phone
- In person
NOTE: We do NOT recommend free services like Credit Karma (who get information from TransUnion), or Mogo and Borrowell (who get information from Equifax). They offer free credit reports, but in our experience they only present summary information, and it is often out of date or inaccurate, and you can’t ask them to correct it. The banks get their credit information directly from the credit bureaus, TransUnion and Equifax, so you should only get a free credit report directly from TransUnion or Equifax.
We recommend getting a free copy of your credit report and completing a review for mistakes annually. This is also a good way to monitor your credit profile for potential fraud and identity theft.
Credit bureaus will only provide one free copy of your credit report per year. If you would like to monitor your credit report more frequently order an Equifax credit report followed by the TransUnion report 6 months later and continue alternating every six months.
We will help you get a copy of your credit report at your credit counselling session if you have not already done so.
Not all lenders report to both credit bureaus so it’s important to review each agency’s records about your credit profile.
NOTE: Credit reports are not updated instantly. In our experience, it can take up to four months after you file a bankruptcy or consumer proposal for your credit report to be updated, so we recommend waiting at least four months after filing before requesting your credit report.
Due to strict privacy laws, Hoyes Michalos is not permitted to report to the credit reporting agencies, and we are not permitted to change any information on your credit report. If you discover errors on your credit report, please see our article on how to correct errors on your credit report.