What Is Credit History? – NerdWallet

Credit history is a record of how you’ve managed the repayment of debts, such as credit cards and loans.

Your credit history is recorded in your credit reports, which also contain additional information about your finances.

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Credit history definition

Your credit history consists of information such as:

  • How many accounts you’ve had, both open and closed.

  • How much you owe on each account.

  • Your payment history, which shows whether you paid your bills on time, as well as negative marks such as delinquencies or accounts in collections.

Credit history vs. credit report

Credit history is the main component of your credit reports. Credit reports are data files generated by the three major credit bureaus — Experian, Equifax and TransUnion — which collect information from your creditors.

In addition to your credit history, your reports also show items like your name, current and old addresses, and your employers’ names.

Why credit history is important

Lenders, employers and landlords look at your track record of handling credit to see if you are a good candidate for a loan, a job or an apartment.

A long history of responsible credit use positively affects your credit score, which is calculated using the information in your credit reports.

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