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Help! Have we messed up?


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My dh and I settled our last two debts today with the help of our attorney. Did we screw up by doing this? In all we settled seven credit card debts that were acquired by dh ex-best friend trying to start his own business. (He couldn't get credit so we let him use ours- stupid, huh?) Then we signed on with a company who supposedly would settle the debts for us, but actually did nothing until they were all charged-off, and by then one was threatening a lawsuit so we contacted our attorney friend and have now settled all. Didn't know about these boards until after the fact. Is there anything we can do to start repairing the damage? Would like to request credit reports today, is it Ok to start with one of these 3-in-1 things and go from there, or should we contact each of the big three individually?

Thanks in advance for any advice! :)

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In my opinoin I would get all three separate and go from there.

I put all my Credit reports in a 3 ring binder each time I get one. That way I can look at the progress throughout the whole process and see how badly or well I have done.

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You can use both... but what I recommend the first time is to go direct to each of the CRAs:




Order the $9 report from them... don't mess with any 3 in 1 reports yet. You can get the credit scoring if you want the first time around, but don't bother getting the cheapest one from TransUnion - it is no good!

You may even be able to get a free report - especially through TransUnion online... by going the $9 report route (avoid TrueCredit - that is a re-selling sitting on their site - no good!) anyway... got he $9 route like you are going to order... bypass the terms and when you come to the application screen you will see a drop down box at the bottom of the green page...

Ok, with this part... if you know you have existing credit cards (pick on of them) and in the drop down box select that you have been turned down credit and when it prompts for the name give one of your credit card company names and make up a date for the last 30 or 60 days.

Then continue... you may dupe the system into giving you a free credit report... I have accomplished the same thing - cause on of my creditors is Citi Bank & they are pulling reports every few months all the time for review. The CRA don't know who has approved or turned you down... they just know for sure who accessed!

On the others you just have to call by phone to see if you can get a free report & they won't make you give the name of the creditor (even if you want to try this for TransUnion and wait for snail mail):

Experian 888-397-3742

Equifax 800-685-1111

TransUnion 800-916-8800

Your first time looking at the credit reports - you rather go with the source since they will show crutial detailed information which is missing from the 3 in 1 reports! Like figuring up your last activity dates for expiration... you will also have access to file numbers issued by each CRA with a file number so you can get into customer service.

It is also a good idea so you can call in the first time with any questions you may have about account information... if you don't know when the item expires - then call them and ask... if you don't have an address needed for a creditor then call in and ask... also if you have incorrect personal information (like name / address) call in and dispute these first. That way you have everything done right so you can more on to disputing without much of a hitch that some run into when dealing solely by writing - or just no knowing what is relevant to ask.

Be sure that the information in your credit reprot is solely yours! If you suspect something is wrong then point it out to the rep at the CRA and ask them to look at the file if they see anything wrong like additional SS#s - sometimes they can see things which you might not, or might overlook. Many people have mixed files & if you find this to be your problem... then tell them you want the file unmixed (but it will most likely require you to forward copy of your Drivers License).

Any way once you have this first time contact taken care of, then you can revert back to 3 in 1 reports should you like.

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