Credit Report

What is a credit inquiry?

A credit inquiry is a request from a legitimate business to look at your credit history. There are two types of inquiries:

Hard Inquiry: In most cases, a hard inquiry occurs after you apply for credit from a lender. These inquiries may have a slight, temporary impact on your credit score since many credit scoring models look at how frequently and recently you have applied for credit.

Soft Inquiry: These types of inquiries tend to be: a general monitoring of your credit history, prescreening inquiries by prospective lenders, or your personal requests for your annual credit report. Unlike hard inquiries, these will not change your credit score.

You can visit Transunion’s website to learn more about how multiple inquiries affect credit scores. MPOWER obtains Canadian credit information from Equifax, which provides information about how multiple inquiries affect credit scores.

What credit bureau does MPOWER use to check my credit?

MPOWER uses TransUnion for a U.S. credit check and Equifax for a Canadian credit check.

For international students, MPOWER uses a cross-border consumer reporting agency called NOVA to check your credit history at your country of origin.

Why is building a U.S./Canadian credit history important?

Credit history and credit score both provide an impression of your repayment reliability and trustworthiness to U.S. lenders as well as to landlords, cell phone retailers, and even employers who perform background checks.

If you don’t have a credit history, lenders can’t assess your reliability and will most likely charge higher rates or provide you with a smaller credit amount.

Please note that MPOWER does not currently report to Canadian credit bureaus, but students at Canadian schools can establish a U.S. credit history with MPOWER.

What is a credit score?

A credit score is a number that expresses your credit history. It represents your ability to pay off your debt by factoring together the four aspects of a credit report. The higher the score, the lower the risk for an institution to lend money to you.

Just like college-rankings, different organizations calculate credit score similarly, but with minor differences. FICO (Experian)  is the score most-often used by lenders, while some lenders use BEACON (Equifax) and EMPIRICA (TransUnion) for credit scores.

Unlike many other lenders, MPOWER does not use your credit score when considering your loan application.

Who are the main credit bureaus in Canada?

The two national credit bureaus are TransUnion and Equifax. In addition, there are a number of smaller, regional credit bureaus that collect and provide credit information.

Who are the main credit bureaus in the U.S.?

There are three main credit bureaus: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.

What is included in a credit report?

A credit report is divided into four parts:

  1. Personal information such as name, address, date of birth, social security number, and employers.
  2. Credit history such as available credit, usage of credit, and frequency of on-time payments.
  3. Credit inquiries by a lender, service provider, etc (also called “pulling credit”).
  4. Public records such as delinquencies, tax liens, and collections.

What is a credit report?

A credit report is a detailed report of your credit history.

If MPOWER pulls my credit, how will it affect my credit score and history?

Any potential lender pulling your credit (a “credit inquiry”) may slightly lower your overall credit score temporarily. It can take several months to see your score bounce back up. If you make multiple inquiries in a short amount of time (primarily during a 30-day period), they will be treated as a single inquiry and will therefore have a relatively small impact on your score.

You can visit Transunion to learn more about how multiple inquiries affect credit scores. MPOWER obtains Canadian credit information from Equifax, which provides information about how multiple inquiries affect credit scores.

How can I get a copy of my credit report?

If you have a U.S. credit history, you are entitled to one free copy of your credit report every 12 months from each of the three nationwide credit reporting companies (Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax).

You can obtain a copy of your credit report by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com, the only authorized website for free credit reports, or by calling 877-322-8228.

If you have a Canadian credit history, you can obtain a free copy of your credit report every 12 months from both of the nationwide credit reporting companies (Equifax and Transunion).

My MPOWER application was denied because of my credit report. What can I do?

If your application has been declined by MPOWER (or any other lender) due to low or bad credit, you may request to see a copy of the credit report MPOWER received from the credit bureau. To do so, you must contact the credit bureau directly within 60 days of being declined.

You have a right under the Fair Credit Reporting Act to know the information contained in your credit file at the credit bureau listed on your loan decision letter. You can work with Transunion or the credit bureau in your home country to dispute any incorrect information in your file that may have led to the decline of your application. If this is the case, please reapply with MPOWER once the error is corrected.

How does MPOWER help me build my credit?

MPOWER reports your loan balance and monthly payment history to the U.S. credit bureaus (Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax) each month. Showing a positive payment history allows you to build a solid U.S. credit history and enables other creditors to make decisions regarding your creditworthiness.

Please note that MPOWER does not currently report to Canadian credit bureaus, but students at Canadian schools can establish a U.S. credit history with MPOWER. A U.S. credit history is often useful for students trying to establish a credit history in Canada.

When will I see my MPOWER loan on my credit report?

It can take several months for your MPOWER loan and payment history to be added to your file by U.S. credit bureaus.

Please note that MPOWER does not currently report to Canadian credit bureaus, but students at Canadian schools can establish a U.S. credit history with MPOWER.

I don’t have a credit history. Will this affect my application with MPOWER Financing?

If you do not have a credit history in the U.S. or Canada, or, for international students, in your country of origin, MPOWER’s decision about your credit will not be affected.

If you are unsure about the status of your credit history, please check with TransUnion for U.S. credit checks by calling 800-888-4213, with NOVA for international credit checks by calling 844-423-1345, or with Equifax for Canadian credit checks by calling 800-465-7166.

I have bad credit and am applying for a loan with MPOWER. How will that affect the application decision?

Although MPOWER does not require a U.S. credit score for a loan application, your credit history will be reviewed by our credit team. Public records such as delinquencies, tax liens and collections, and late payments (30,60, and/or 90 days) are important factors considered for the credit review.

If you think there may be something in your credit history that could affect MPOWER’s decision, please check with TransUnion for U.S. accounts by calling 800-888-4213, with NOVA for international accounts by calling 844-423-1345, or with Equifax for Canadian accounts by calling 800-465-7166.

© MPOWER Financing, Public Benefit Corporation

DISCLAIMER - Subject to credit approval, loans are made by Bank of Lake Mills or MPOWER Financing, PBC. Bank of Lake Mills does not have an ownership interest in MPOWER Financing. Neither MPOWER Financing nor Bank of Lake Mills is affiliated with the school you attended or are attending. Bank of Lake Mills is Member FDIC. None of the information contained in this website constitutes a recommendation, solicitation or offer by MPOWER Financing or its affiliates to buy or sell any securities or other financial instruments or other assets or provide any investment advice or service.