A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q
R S T U V W X Y Z
Scheduled payment plus additional monthly payment. Leads to quicker payoff of
debt and less interest paid over life of loan.
Each account on your Experian credit report has an "Account
Condition." It indicates the present state of the account (current, past
due, etc.), but does not indicate the payment history of the account.
Once lenders make a "yes" decision, they might want to review your
credit report on a regular basis as they continue to manage their financial
risk. This monitoring, called account monitoring, scans credit reports for
certain risk characteristics as defined by the lender. Federal law specifically
permits lenders to monitor their accounts. When you signed your credit
application, you gave the lender permission to access your credit report from
time to time.
Accounts in good standing
Lists credit items that are positive and should help your creditworthiness.
Account information includes the creditor's name and address, your account
number, the status (current, paid, closed, etc.), type and terms of the account,
and additional information as reported to us by your creditors. Some creditors
may not report to us, so all of your accounts may not be listed.
Refers to the price to purchase another company or property.
Additional monthly payment
The amount of your extra payment per month. This amount is in addition to your
minimum required payment. This payment will be used to reduce your principal
balance more quickly than if you only made your regular payment.
Adjustable rate mortgage
A mortgage where the interest rate is liable to change over the term of the loan
and which is dependent on influences such as interest rates on Treasury
The percentage of debt to be repaid to credit grantors in a Chapter 13
A bureau or credit reporting agency in partnership with Experian.
A card that is offered jointly by two organizations. One is a credit card issuer
and the other is a professional association, special interest group or other
non-bank company. For example, Citibank and American Airlines sponsor the
Citibank AAdvantage card.
Also Known As
The process of fully paying off your debt by installments of principal and
earned interest over a fixed time.
Amount past due
Current amount delinquent on a loan.
The once-a-year cost of owning a credit card. Some credit card providers offer
cards with no annual fee. The annual fee, with interest and other fees are part
of the total cost of credit.
Your yearly income. For married couples this is your total combined yearly
Annual interest rate
The amount of interest you will pay over one year, expressed as a percentage of
your balance. Maximum interest rate is 20%.
Annual Percentage Rate (APR)
A measure of how much interest credit will cost you, expressed as an annual
Annual rate of return
The pretax rate of return on the amount you earn on savings and investments. For
example, the long-term rate of return for investments in the stocks that make up
the S&P 500 is about 11%. A savings account earns 2% to 5%.
An expert judgment or estimate of the quality or value of real estate, made by
an appraiser, as of a given date.
The charge for estimating the value of property offered as security.
Anything owned by an individual that has a cash value. This includes property,
goods, savings or investments.
Describes the consumer's relationship to an account (primary responsibility,
authorized users, etc.).
Person permitted by a credit cardholder to charge goods and services on the
cardholder's account. The card holder is responsible for charges made by an
Average daily balance
The average daily balance is a method used to calculate finance charges on an
account. It is calculated by adding the outstanding balance on each day in the
billing period, and dividing that total by the number of days in the billing
period. The calculation includes new purchases and payments. The daily interest
rate is then applied to the daily balance to calculate the finance charge.
A debt that a lender has determined the borrower is not going to repay.
The total amount of money owed on a loan or credit account, or the total amount
of money in a checking or savings account. In the case of a credit card, it
includes any unpaid balance from the previous month, new purchases, cash
advances, and any charges such as an annual fee, late fee or interest.
Moving a balance from one account to another. In the case of a credit account,
the balance (debt) is moved from one credit card to another. This is often done
with special checks or forms, or may be offered as an option on some credit card
applications. Some credit card issuers may offer temporary special lower rates
for balance transfers.
A short-term fixed rate loan which involves small payments for a certain period
of time and one large payment for the remaining amount of the principal at a
time specified in the contract.
Balloon loans require a single, lump sum payment at the end of the loan term.
This is usually a larger amount and the borrower often takes another loan to
make the payment.
An institution that accepts funds for deposits, lends money and may offer other
financial services such as insurance, brokerage or trust accounts.
A credit or debit card issued by a bank or other financial institution.
Bankruptcy - Chapter 11
A chapter of the Bankruptcy Code that provides a type of bankruptcy where
certain assets of the business or individual are sold to pay off a portion of
all existing debts.
Bankruptcy - Chapter 13
A type of bankruptcy usually used by businesses rather than individuals. Used as
an alternative to liquidation under Chapter 7.
Bankruptcy - Chapter 7
A type of bankruptcy where debtors repay debts according to a plan accepted by
the debtor, the creditors and the court. Plan payments usually come from the
debtor's future income and are paid to creditors through the court systems and
the bankruptcy trustee.
Federal laws governing the conditions and procedures under which persons and
businesses that are unable to repay their debts can seek relief.
Better Business Bureau
A voluntary, nonprofit group established by businesses to improve the code of
business practices and to define fair standards and ethics in the conduct of the
business. The Better Business Bureau is neither a government agency nor a
The three largest credit reporting companies: Experian, Equifax and TransUnion.
A list of charges for goods sold, work performed or services provided to the
person who has agreed to pay the costs.
The number of days between statements (bills). This is generally about 25 days.
A financial plan itemizing income and expense during a projected time period.
A lump sum payment made to the creditor by the borrower or by a third party to
reduce some or all of the consumer's debt. A buydown will reduce the amount of
remaining periodic payments to repay the indebtedness.
Recorded in asset accounts and then depreciated or amortized, as is appropriate
for expenditures for items with useful lives greater than one year.
Cash withdrawn on your credit card at a bank office or ATM. Cash advances
usually carry fees and a higher APR than other charges.
Total amount of cash used in a purchase.
Cash on hand
Cash you have for the down payment and all closing costs.
In bankruptcy, this term refers to a section of the Bankruptcy Code.
Action of transferring accounts deemed uncollectible to a category such as
"bad debt" or "loss." Such accounts will usually continue to
be pursued by collectors, but are no longer considered part of a company's
receivable or profit picture because they are unlikely to be repaid in full.
In the credit world, this is any court action against a consumer to regain money
for someone else. If successful, the civil action will usually result in a wage
assignment, child support judgment, small claims judgment or civil judgment of
money to be paid.
The date the account was closed either at the request of the consumer or by the
A creditworthy co-maker is sometimes required in situations where an applicant's
qualifications have not been established or are marginal. A co-maker is legally
responsible to repay the charges in the joint account agreement if the other
Person who pledges in writing as part of a credit contract to repay the debt if
the borrower fails to do so.
A business service employed to collect creditors' unpaid or past due accounts. A
collection agency is often compensated by receiving an agreed upon percentage of
any amount collected.
A loan that pays off all of your existing debt, preferably at a lower average
A buyer of goods and services.
Consumer Credit Counseling Service
A nonprofit organization that helps consumers manage, and plan their use of
Consumer credit information
Also known as a credit report.
This includes the account/payment history of your credit relationships for seven
years and public record history for ten years. Name and address history is also
The provision of funds by a lender for a promise of future payment.
Any loan or debt listed on your credit report is considered a credit account.
A form used by a lender to obtain personal, financial and credit information to
appraise an applicant's credit worthiness.
The amount of credit you have remaining on your credit account. It equals your
credit limit minus your credit balance. This is also referred to as credit
available and percentage of credit currently available.
An agency that gathers information about consumers' credit relationships and
provides creditors with credit reports and scores on consumers.
A plastic payment card which allows the owner to obtain goods and services
without the requirement to pay cash and on credit terms.
Credit card rate
Annual interest rate you pay on outstanding credit card balances.
A file containing customer correspondence and statements, credit ratings, credit
history and payment patterns.
A record of how a person has borrowed and repaid debts.
In terms of your credit report, an investigation is the process a consumer
credit reporting agency goes through in order to verify credit report
information disputed by a consumer. The credit grantor who supplied the
information will be contacted to verify the disputed information. If the
information is verified, it remains on the report; if it is not, the information
is deleted or corrected.
The maximum amount an individual or business can borrow in connection with a
The maximum dollar amount that can be charged on a specific card account.
A report containing information about a consumer's identity, credit
relationships, some court actions, consumers statements and previous inquiries
into that file.
Credit reporting agency
Also known as a credit bureau. An agency that checks credit information and
keeps files on people who apply for and use credit.
A credit score summarizes your credit history into a number that lets lenders
and others quickly know how responsible you have been with your past credit
accounts and loans. Lenders use formulas to calculate your score based on
information from your credit report. These scores help predict how likely you
are to pay your loans or credit cards. While lenders may use different scoring
models to determine how you rate, personal details such as race, gender or
religion are not considered when determining your score. However, the various
scoring models have been fairly well standardized so that credit bureau scores,
including your PLUS Score developed by Scorex, use similar information and are
- PLUS Score
A credit score developed by Experian, calculated based on information
contained in an individual credit file. PLUS Score can range from 330 to
830, with a higher score indicating lower credit risk. The formula used to
calculate your PLUS Score is based on the most current consumer information
available, using a similar formula to those used by lenders.
Your credit score can change daily as your credit file is updated, so it is
calculated at the time a lender requests your credit report and reflects
your current credit standing. The information in your credit files at the
different credit bureaus may vary, which means that your scores may be
different for each bureau, including your PLUS Score.
A mutual association formed by persons with a common affiliation such as
employees, a union or a religious group in which pooled savings are made. The
funds are invested for appreciation and members may borrow at competitive rates.
One who extends credit to borrowers.
A specified sum of money that is legally owed from one to another.
The act of paying off all outstanding debt with a single loan.
The ratio, expressed as a percentage, which results when a borrower's monthly
payment obligation on long-term debts is divided by his or her gross monthly
Failure of a debtor to make loan repayments as agreed to in a loan contract.
Accounts classified according to the time past due. Common classifications are
30, 60, 90 and 120 days past due. Can also include accounts that have been
charged off, gone to collectors, liens, bankruptcies or court judgment.
Direct marketing differs from general marketing in that the result of a
promotion is measurable in terms of response. Direct marketing is also largely
dependent upon the use of customer files and lists. Direct marketing is utilized
by virtually every type of business and organization. However, the primary users
are magazine publishers, catalog houses, political campaign organizations and
A debt that a court declares no longer needs to be repaid due to bankruptcy.
Alimony, child support, liability for willful and malicious conduct and certain
student loans cannot be discharged.
A credit report provided to the consumer which shows the "nature or
substance" of what is in his or her credit records as outlined by the FCRA
(Fair Credit Reporting Act).
When a consumer files for bankruptcy, the judge may decide to not allow the
consumer to continue with the bankruptcy. If the judge rules against the
petition, all debts are reinstated and the bankruptcy petition is
A charge by a car dealer to defray the cost of preparing and selling the vehicle
at the end of the lease if the vehicle is not purchased by the consumer.
Amount paid up front when arranging credit. For leases, a down payment is often
called a "capital lost reduction".
Represents a consolidated average of a major economic component - such as
wholesale prices, housing starts or inflation - that is used to measure economic
Key statistics of the economy that reveal the direction of the economy; for
example, the unemployment rate and the inflation rate.
The person or company who is the ultimate recipient of information. Sometimes
information passes a number of different processes before reaching the "end
Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA)
Part of the Consumer Credit Protection Act, prohibiting creditors from
discriminating against credit applicants on the basis of race, color, religion,
national origin, sex, marital status, age and receipt of public assistance.
One of the three credit reporting bureaus, headquartered in Atlanta, GA. The
other two are Experian and TransUnion.
Property or money held by a third party until the agreed upon obligations of a
contract are met.
One of the three major credit reporting bureaus. The other two are Equifax and
Fair Credit and Charge Disclosure Act
Part of the Truth In Lending Act requiring the disclosure of the costs involved
in credit card plans that are offered by mail, telephone or applications
distributed to the general public.
Fair Credit Billing Act (FCBA)
A federal law that provides a specific error resolution procedure to protect
credit card customers from making payments on inaccurate billings.
Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)
A federal law governing the actions of credit reporting agencies. Enacted by the
US Congress in 1970 and amended in 1996, the FCRA protects consumer rights by
limiting access to your credit report.
Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)
A federal law prohibiting abusive and unfair debt collection practices.
Federal tax withholding
Total amount of moneys withheld from your take-home pay for federal taxes. This
amount will appear on your pay stub.
Federal Trade Commission
A federal agency which administers and enforces rules to prevent unfair business
Any of a variety of charges.
The amount withheld from your paycheck for Social Security taxes. You pay half
of your FICA tax; your employer pays the other half.
Amount of interest charged to you by a lender. Finance charges are usually
included in the monthly payment total.
A monetary aid to remove the cost barriers that may prevent a person from
pursuing a higher education. Assistance is available from a variety of programs
funded by federal, state, university and private sources. These can include:
grants, scholarships, loans and employment opportunities.
An enterprise such as a bank whose primary business and function is to collect
money from the public and invest it in financial assets such as stocks, bonds,
and loans to others.
An annual percentage interest rate that does not change during the term of the
Flagging an account
Identifying an account for a specific purpose or reason and temporarily
suspending activity on the account until the problem that caused it to be
flagged is resolved.
When a debtor fails to meet his obligations to pay back a loan, the lender can
take back possession of any property (such as a house) used to secure repayment
for the loan. Foreclosure refers to the lender's legal action to take possession
of the property. Fraud
Any act or practice resulting in loss of someone's rights or property. Usually
consists of making false and misleading representations with the intention of
cheating another person.
An addition to someone's name which indicates there are others in the same
family with the same name. Examples: Sammy Davis, Jr., King George the III,
Thomas Keating IV.
The period before interest begins to accrue on new purchases.
The person ultimately responsible for paying a bill.
Hearing impaired consumer service
A special phone number available for hearing impaired consumers who have a TDD.
The number for Experian is 1-800-972-0322.
High risk consumers have delinquencies, bankruptcies, charge-offs or public
record items on their credit report. These are indications to lenders that a
consumer has been an irresponsible user of credit, and will likely be so in the
future. High risk consumers may only be able to get credit with very high
interest rates, if at all.
Home appreciated at:
Annual appreciation you estimate in the home you are purchasing. Not all homes
appreciate at all times and can lose value (depreciate) as well.
Home equity closing costs
Any costs other than interest added to the home equity loan. Costs can include
any appraiser fees, points paid or other misc. fees. Costs can be paid up front
or added to the loan balance.
Home equity interest rate (APR)
Annual percentage rate for the home equity loan.
Home equity line of credit (HELOC)
A mortgage loan that allows the borrower to obtain multiple advances of the loan
proceeds at his or her discretion, up to an amount that represents a specified
percentage of the borrower's equity in property.
A form of fraud in which a consumer's financial information is illegally
acquired for the purpose of making unauthorized purchases and transactions with
their credit cards, or with funds from their checking or savings accounts.
Income tax rate
This is your federal, state and local income tax rates combined. Your income tax
rate is important in determining the amount you can save if you use a home
equity loan to consolidate your debt.
A number indicating a change in quantity, as of prices, relative to the
magnitude at some specified point usually taken as 100.
There are two types of inquiry. A hard inquiry is when you have applied for
credit, which gives a the lender permission to pull your credit report. All hard
inquiries are available for all credit grantors to review. A soft inquiry is
only available for you to see. It does not influence your credit score. This
type of inquiry includes your request for your credit report or pre-screen
inquiries for credit grantors.
Credit accounts in which the debt is divided into amounts to be paid
successively at specified intervals until the debt is paid off.
Debt to be paid at regular times over a specified period.
The percent, per unit of time, of the total sum borrowed that is charged by a
bank or financial institution for the use of their money.
Investigative consumer reports
These are consumer reports that are usually ordered by a prospective employer
for sensitive jobs where background checks and security clearances are
necessary. An investigative consumer report might contain information obtained
from a credit report, but it is more comprehensive than a credit report. It
contains subjective material on an individual's character, habits and mode of
living, obtained through interviewing the associates and neighbors of the person
being investigated. Experian does not provide investigative consumer reports.
Investment rate of return
The amount you expect to earn on your investments. This is the return that you
would make if you were to invest your down payment, security deposit or closing
costs instead of using it in your purchase or lease of an auto or purchase of a
A petition filed by certain credit grantors (instead of by the individual or
business) to have a debtor judged bankrupt. If the bankruptcy is granted, it is
known as an involuntary bankruptcy.
A company or public sector entity with shares, bonds or other securities listed
on a stock exchange.
On your credit report, you have the right to offer an explanation about a
particular account or public record item. Only one item-specific statement may
be added per item. An Item-specific statement is also known as a "consumer
Typically a bank account in the names of two (or more) persons. Arrangements can
be made such that either individual or all signatures are required when drawing
A final determination issued by a court for the rights of the parties involved
in a lawsuit.
A one or two alpha character code that defines or classifies what industry or
type of service a given company offers.
A delinquent payment; a failure to deliver a loan or debt payment on or before
the time agreed.
A person or company that offers to lend money to a borrower for a given period
of time. The borrower is obliged to repay the loan with installments or single
payment together with specified interest.
Legal document used to create a security interest in another's property. A lien
is often given as a security for the payment of a debt. A lien can also be
placed against a consumer for failure to pay the city, county, state or federal
government money that is owed.
Line of credit
A line of credit works like a credit card, except you don't charge purchases.
Instead, a person with a line of credit would use checks to make purchases which
are drawn on a line of credit rather than on an amount on deposit. A line of
credit will have a maximum amount, like a credit limit.
Loan origination rate
The percentage the lending institution charges to cover some of its processing
costs in making a loan in addition to the interest it will earn. Example: 1% for
a $100,000 home equals $1,000.
The payment you make to your creditor on a loan. Also, the amount of your
standard monthly payment.
Home, auto, personal and home equity are all loan types. The two most common
loans types, home equity and personal, differ in fees, rates and tax
deductibility of interest. Home equity loans often have higher fees, but usually
have lower rates and a tax deduction for interest paid. Personal loans do not
have a tax deduction for interest paid, and have a higher interest rate, but
often have lower upfront fees. These are important considerations when choosing
Low risk consumers have paid their bills on time, held their credit accounts for
several years, and do not have large outstanding balances. In general, they have
proven to lenders that they are responsible, prudent users of credit. Low risk
consumers are able to quickly obtain credit at the most favorable interest
A purchase for a substantial amount of money, like a car or refrigerator or
How much something is worth in the marketplace. Market value can change based on
supply and demand. In terms of automobiles, it is frequently the value of the
automobile after a lease term is over.
A U.S. government program of hospital insurance and voluntary medical insurance
for persons aged 65 and over, and for certain disabled persons under 65. A
certain amount is withheld from your take-home pay to cover Medicare.
Medium high risk
Medium high risk consumers may have had delinquencies, charge-offs or public
record items, but not as many incidents as high risk consumers. Although such
consumers may still receive credit offers, they will most likely pay high
interest rates because of their risk level.
Medium low risk
Medium low risk consumers have generally exhibited responsible credit behavior,
but most likely have one or two delinquencies on their credit report.
Medium risk consumers most likely have credit reports that have one or more
delinquencies, high outstanding debt or relatively new credit accounts. Such
consumers are usually able to obtain credit, but at higher interest rates than
medium low or low risk consumers.
Member summary (record)
A subset of CreditExpert.com's membership file containing all relevant data
about each individual member. A minimum amount of information is maintained on
each member, including contact information.
Monthly PMI payment
Monthly cost of Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). For home loans secured with
less than 20% down, PMI is commonly estimated at .5% of your loan balance each
year and is used in this calculator. Monthly PMI is calculated by multiplying
your starting loan balance by your PMI percent and dividing by 12. When your
equity exceeds 20% of the original purchase price, your PMI payment should drop
to zero. However, you should contact your lender when this occurs, as it will
often not be removed automatically.
A written agreement to repay a loan. The agreement is secured by a mortgage,
serves as proof of an indebtedness, and states the manner in which it shall be
paid. The note states the actual amount of the debt that the mortgage secures
and renders the mortgagor personally responsible for repayment.
Short-term or long-term use of property or money with the consent of the owner
of the property or money. Usually the loan of money has an agreed-to repayment
schedule and an interest charge.
Most recent date
The date your account information was most recently updated.
Net home price
Selling price of your home after subtracting any sales commissions.
Net house payment
Your house payment minus the value of the tax deduction and principal payment.
Notice of results
If you've requested an investigation of information on your credit report,
you're entitled to receive a Notice of Results if your information was updated
or deleted. You may request that the credit bureau send the corrected
information in your credit history to credit grantors and employers who reviewed
your information within a specific period of time. If your investigation does
not result in a change to your credit history, the results will not be sent.
Number of points paid
The total number of points (prepaid interest) used to reduce the interest rate
of your mortgage. Each point equals 1% of your mortgage balance.
The term used to describe how long negative information should stay in a credit
file before it is no longer considered relevant to the credit granting decision.
The FCRA has determined the obsolescence period to be 10 years in the case of
bankruptcy and 7 years in all other instances.
A consumer request for removal of his/her name from future targeted marketing
solicitations by direct marketers, banks and credit reporting agencies.
Consumers may opt-out by calling 1-888-5OPTOUT.
The total amount of debt you owe to your creditors.
An outstanding bill or account not paid when due.
Total number of accounts that have been paid satisfactorily or paid after having
been previously delinquent.
An account reflecting late payments or payments received after an agreed upon
time for settlement.
Reflects the history of payments on an account, including any delinquencies or
late payments occurring during the previous seven years (current account,
delinquent 30 days, current was 60 days past due, redeemed repossession, charge
off - not paying, etc.).
As defined by the Federal Fair Credit Reporting Act, and various state
regulators, the circumstances under which a third party may obtain a consumer
credit report. Permissible purposes include credit transactions, employment
purposes, insurance underwriting, government financial responsibility laws,
court orders, subpoenas, written instructions of the consumer or legitimate
The personal information section on your credit report includes your name (and
any name variations), driver's license number, Social Security number, date and
year of birth, spouse's name, employers, personal phone numbers and information
about your residence. This information is reported to Experian by your,
creditors or other sources. As part of a fraud prevention program, a notice with
additional information may appear in this section.
You can add a personal statement that will appear at the beginning of your
credit report. Your personal statement may include a general explanation about
the information on your report.
If a consumer files for bankruptcy, but a judge has not yet ruled that it can
proceed, the process is known as a bankruptcy petition.
PITI percent of annual income
The percent of your annual income the financial institution will allow you to
use for your "Principal, Interest, Tax and Insurance" payment for your
home. The customary amount of your income to be used for PITI is 28%, but will
vary among lenders.
A credit score developed by Experian, calculated based on information contained
in an individual credit file PLUS Score can range from 330 to 830, with a higher
score indicating lower credit risk. The formula used to calculate your PLUS
Score is based on the most current consumer information available, using a
similar formula to those used by lenders.
Your credit score can change daily as your credit file is updated, so it is
calculated at the time a lender requests your credit report and reflects your
current credit standing. The information in your credit files at the different
credit bureaus may vary, which means that your scores may be different for each
bureau, including your PLUS Score.
The assignment of values for characteristics identified as indicators of a
person's creditworthiness. Point scoring is based on the same evaluation process
used by a credit grantor in the analysis of an applicant's creditworthiness.
Potentially negative items
Any information on your credit report that may have a negative impact on your
ability to obtain credit. This may include your account information (type and
terms), payment history, bankruptcy, lien or judgment information.
Pre-approved credit card
Pre-approved offers are mailed to your home because you meet the risk criteria
of the company making the offer. A pre-approved offer is not guaranteed. You can
still be turned down when you apply.
A process where lenders review consumer's credit information for a guaranteed
credit offer. See also pre-approved.
The amount of debt, not including interest. The face value of a note, mortgage,
Total of principal paid per month on your mortgage.
A statement that discloses a company's practices related to their collection and
used personal information, which the information may be shared with and for what
purposes, what choices are available to the consumer regarding the collection
and use of their data, what security procedure is used, and how a consumer can
correct any inaccuracies.
Property tax rate
The rate at which your property will be taxed per year. Example: 1% for a
$100,000 home equals $100 per year in property taxes.
Public record data
When included as part of the credit report, this information is limited to tax
liens, lawsuits and judgments that relate to the consumer's debt obligations.
The amount, before taxes, fees and closing costs that you pay for an item like a
home or auto.
Minimum monthly income range required to qualify for a loan payment.
Rate earned on savings
This is the rate you earn on short-term savings. For most people this is
currently 4% to 5% annually.
Rate of depreciation
The rate of depreciation gauges how fast your new purchase - automobile,
computer, etc. - will lose its market value. High depreciation rate is about 20%
per year, medium is 15% per year and low is 10% per year.
The maximum amount that the interest rate on an adjustable rate mortgage can
rise in a single year.
Real estate secured debt
Any debt that has been used to buy a home or has been secured by your home. For
example, a home equity loan can be a real estate secured debt.
This means that a lien has been satisfied and is no longer in effect.
A 10-digit number that uniquely identifies each personal Experian credit report.
This number should always be referenced when you contact us. Each new report you
receive will have a different number.
After a borrower is significantly behind on payments, a creditor takes
possession of property pledged as collateral on a loan contract to pay off the
remaining loan amount.
Request an investigation
If you believe that information on your report is inaccurate, you can request an
investigation of the information. The credit bureaus will ask the sources of the
information to check their records at no cost to you. Incorrect information will
be corrected; information that cannot be verified will be deleted. Accurate
information cannot be removed from your credit report. An investigation may take
up to 30 days. When it is complete, the credit bureau will send you the results.
Request for your credit history
This is a request for your personal credit report. Consumers' credit reports
contain information credit grantor can't see such as a detailed history of when
your credit information is viewed by credit grantors or employers.
For leases, this is the remaining value of the property you're leasing at the
end of the lease term. The higher this amount, the lower your lease payment will
A plastic payment card issued by a specific retailer or group of retailers for
limited use at their own outlets.
An account from which credit is automatically available up to a predetermined
maximum limit as long as a customer makes regular payments.
Debt owned on an account that the borrower can repeatedly use and pay back
without having to reapply every time credit is used. Credit cards are the most
common type of revolving debt.
In determining credit scores, lenders place you in a risk category that compares
you to a large number of consumers with similar credit histories. This allows
lenders to compare "apple to apples," ensuring that your credit
behavior is judged in a context that is relevant and fair.
Risk score models
A tool used by credit grantors to predict future payment behavior of consumers.
Total price for an item, including taxes and fees.
Total amount of sales tax on a purchase.
Sales tax rate
Percentage sales tax to be charged on a purchase. Sales tax for buying is
charged on the total sales amount. In the case of a lease, sales tax is only due
on the amount of the lease and is added to each lease payment.
Accounts that are current or have been paid satisfactorily.
If a consumer has paid all the money the court says he/she owes, the judgment is
Payment due at a scheduled time. In the case of a home, the monthly principal
and interest payment is based on your original mortgage amount, term and
Scorex is one of the world's leading decision solutions and business
intelligence organizations. Scorex's experience in the credit industry validates
it as the authority on the entire customer life cycle. Utilizing the latest data
and technology, Scorex develops industry solutions through such services as data
mining and analysis, scoring models, market analysis, and business intelligence.
The company lists more than 800 major global clients representing a broad
spectrum of consumer and business-to-business entities. Scorex has offices in 26
countries supporting clients in over 50 countries worldwide.
Score factors are elements from your credit report that drive your credit score.
For example, such elements as your total debt, types of accounts, number of late
payments and age of accounts are what determine your credit score. Score factors
can have a positive or negative affect on your credit score.
Loan for which some form of acceptable collateral, such as a house, car or
deposit has been pledged.
Real or personal property that a borrower pledges as collateral for the term of
a loan. Should the borrower fail to repay, the creditor may take ownership of
the secured property by following legal procedures.
A statement that is added to one's credit report when a credit bureau is
notified that the consumer may be a victim of fraud. It remains on file for 90
days. A Security Alert suggests that creditors should request proof of
identification before granting credit in that person's name. Once a security
alert has been added, your report will no longer be available for online
viewing. You may still receive your report through the mail.
The creditor's right to take property or a portion of property offered as
security (collateral) for a loan.
A lump sum paid by the seller to the buyer's creditor to reduce the cost of the
loan to the buyer. This payment is either required by the creditor or
volunteered by the seller, usually in a loan to buy real estate. One point
equals one percent of the loan amount.
A component of some finance charges, such as the fee for triggering an overdraft
checking account into use.
This includes all fees paid to the lender and mortgage broker, and certain other
fees paid to third parties for services that the lender requires the borrower to
purchase. The remaining settlement costs involve payments to third parties,
which lenders do not control and for which they cannot ordinarily provide
accurate information until later in the origination process. As the borrower,
you should shop around because the lender knows what they are.
State tax withholding
Total amount withheld for state taxes.
A bill summarizing all of the activity on an account within a specified period
of time. A credit card statement is the monthly bill from a credit card issuer
that describes and summarizes the activity on an account. Most credit card
statements include the outstanding balance, purchases, payments, credits,
finance charges and other transactions for the month.
The date on which a statement is created, and the date used to calculate finance
charges (interest) for the statement period.
Statistical models are used to generate credit scores. Modelers analyze credit
reports from millions of consumers to identify the variable that most likely
determine future creditworthiness, which is expressed in the form of a credit
A device that measures changes in the price of a basket of stocks, and
represents the changes using a single figure.
An extra fee for using a service. Surcharges are also referred to as convenience
fees and are commonly presented when using ATMs.
The process in which merchants solicit groups of consumers who are most likely
to be interested in their product or service.
Items that lower your taxable income. Also, the value of the tax deduction you
receive by deducting interest payments to your mortgage and home property taxes.
For example, if you have $900 in interest and $100 property taxes per month, the
monthly value of the tax deduction would be $280 with a tax rate of 28%.
Any fee that is subject to sales tax. When buying a home, this usually includes
title transfer fees.
TDD phone number
A special phone number is available for the hearing impaired consumers who have
a TDD line. The Experian TDD number is 1-800-972-0322.
The length of time you have to pay back a loan.
Term in months
Number of months you have to pay back a loan.
Term in years
The number of years over which you have to pay back a loan. The most common
mortgage terms are 15 and 30 years.
A credit report that has few if any credit accounts or inquiry history. Young
adults, and people new to the United States will typically have thin files until
they begin to establish credit relationships.
Collectors who are under contract to collect debts for a credit department or
credit company; collection agencies.
Total closing costs
Total up front costs paid before your loan can be issued. This is the sum of the
loan origination fee, amount paid for points and any additional closing costs.
Total debt percent of annual income
The percentage of your annual income your financial institution will allow you
to use for installment payments debt. Installment debt includes car payments,
credit card payments, other loan payments and your "Principal, Interest,
Tax and Insurance" payment for your home.
Total down payment
Amount available as a down payment to be paid up front, rather than financed. In
a car purchase, your down payment will be your cash available plus your
trade-in, less any outstanding loan balance on your trade-in. In a home
purchase, your down payment will be your available cash after closing costs.
Sum of all interest paid. In the case of a mortgage, this total interest amount
assumes that there are no prepayments of principal.
Total of all monthly payments over the term of the loan. This total payment
amount assumes that there are no prepayments of principal.
Total dollar amount given on your trade-in vehicle during a car purchase.
Each specific credit relationship with a business is tracked over time as a
trade line on your credit report. This means that you can have multiple accounts
with the same bank, but your payment history will be identified separately for
each account. Trade line information on your credit report includes company,
date account was opened, credit limit, type of account, balance owed and payment
One of the three major credit reporting bureaus. The other two are Experian and
Fee charged for certain uses of your credit line, credit card or ATM card.
Example: fees charged to get a cash advance from an ATM, or to buy theater
tickets over the phone.
Truth in Lending Act
Title I of the Consumer Protection Act. Requires that most categories of lenders
disclose the annual interest rate, the total dollar cost and other terms of
loans and credit sales.
Credit for which no collateral has been pledged. Loans made under this
arrangement are sometimes called signature loans. A loan granted only on the
basis of a customer's written agreement that the loan amount will be paid.
Up front costs
Any fees you are required to pay in advance before you receive a loan. This
could include appraisal fees, loan origination fees and document preparation
Indicates a court judgment that was rendered void and set aside.
A variable rate loan allows for an interest rate that may fluctuate over the
life of the loan. The rate is often tied to an index that reflects changes in
market rates of interest. A fluctuation in the rate causes changes in either the
payments or the length of the loan term. Limits are often placed on the degree
to which the interest rate or the payments can vary. A fixed rate loan, on the
other hand, carries the same interest rate for the life of the loan.
With regard to credit reports, verification is the process of checking the
accuracy of information. Credit grantors or employers may use your credit report
information to verify your application information is correct or you may verify
your own credit information in case of inaccuracy. Credit bureaus will accept
documentation from the consumer to help in the verification of data.
A statement that can be added to a consumer's credit report to alert credit
grantors that the consumer's identification has been used fraudulently to obtain
credit. The statement requests the credit grantor verbally contact the consumer
by telephone before issuing credit. It remains on file for seven years unless
the consumer requests to have it removed.
When a decision is made to not pursue a bankruptcy, a lien, etc.
Writ of replevin
Legal document issued by a court authorizing repossession of property used to
secure a loan.
Years to save
The number of years you have to save to meet your goal.