Credit Report / Credit File


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Files with Canada's major credit-reporting agencies

Your credit report is made available on request of Canada's major credit-reporting agencies for the purposes of credit risk assessment, credit scoring or for other purposes such as employment consideration or leasing an apartment. Given the large number of consumer borrowers, these credit scores tend to be mechanistic. To simplify the analytical process for their customers, the different credit agencies can apply a mathematical algorithm to provide a score the customer can use to more rapidly assess the likelihood that an individual will repay a given debt given the frequency that other individuals in similar situations have defaulted.

Credit Report / Credit File

Along with the credit histories of millions of other people, your credit history is recorded in files maintained by at least one of Canada's major credit-reporting agencies: Equifax Canada and TransUnion Canada — it is possible to obtain your credit file for free — please consult the agency's website in order to obtain more information. These files are called credit reports. A credit report is a "snapshot" of your credit history. It is one of the main tools lenders use to decide whether or not to give you credit.

Your credit file is created when you first borrow money or apply for credit. On a regular basis, companies that lend money or issue credit cards to you — including banks, finance companies, credit unions, retailers — send specific factual information related to the financial transactions they have with you to credit reporting agencies.

Summary of methods to request your credit report and their respective characteristics

Methods Advantages Disadvantages
Mail
  • Free of charge
  • Credit score is not provided
  • Can take some time to receive
Internet
  • Almost instant report
  • Option to get credit score
  • Fee charged