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What You Need to Know About Credit Bureaus in Canada?

Credit bureaus keep a record of all your credit activities and your credit scores. They provide the credit report that helps the banks and other lenders to determine your creditworthiness. The credit bureaus are responsible for gathering your credit information from the different banks and financial institutions and creating a report. But which credit bureaus in Canada can you rely on for accurate credit reports? This article will answer this question as it goes through the 3 main bureaus in Canada. 

The 2 main credit bureaus in Canada are TransUnion and Equifax, while for business credit reports, there is Dun & Bradstreet. These companies play a pivotal role in creating accessibility for you to get sanctioned for credit and loans at good rates. 

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Understanding Credit Bureaus in Canada

Credit bureaus are also called credit reporting agencies. These companies perform the function of gathering user credit information like loans, lenders, from their credit card providers, banks, collection agencies, cell phone providers, etc.

They also assess the information related to court judgments, liens, and bankruptcy, so complete and factual information can be used to determine your creditworthiness. For instance, if you need a personal loan, the lender asks for consent to look at your credit report or check the credit. They can do this by contacting credit agencies.

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This information is used to define the credit score which is usually 3 digits and ranges from 300-900. A score of more than 600 is an excellent one. It is a sign that you pay all your bills on time without delay, while a bad credit score determines that you are not punctual to your debt obligations. 

Credit Score

The below are the various credit score ranges.

741 – 900 = Excellent

690 – 740 = Good

660 – 689 = Average or Fair

575 – 659 = Below Average

300 – 574 = Poor

Read: What Is Considered a Good Credit Score in Canada?

Since the credit reporting agencies follow different protocols for interpretation of your credit score, you might fight slight differences in the,

The 3 credit bureaus in Canada are:

  • TransUnion Canada
  • Equifax Canada
  • Dun & Bradstreet

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1. Equifax Canada

Equifax currently operates in over 24 countries and is a global analytics data company. This company provides credit reports in Canada and the US. It also has 2 personal consumer products which include Equifax Complete Friends And Family, Equifax Complete Premier. 

This subscription helps you in attaining guidance from identity theft, report monitoring, etc. For businesses, Equifax has an extensive array of 70 products. The contact number of this credit bureau is 1-800-871-3250.

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2. Dun & Bradstreet

Dun & Bradstreet renders analytics and credit reports, mainly for businesses. This is an American company that was founded in 1841 and has its operations in many countries on a global scale. To contact the corporate headquarters of Dun & Bradstreet, call on 904-648-6350.

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3. TransUnion Canada

This credit bureau was created in 1968 in the US. It is one of the main bureaus in Canada besides Experian and Equifax. TransUnion was launched in 1989 and its HQ is situated in Toronto. 

This company provides products that include Consumer Disclosure i.e. credit reports and credit monitoring services. This company also has an array of products for businesses. The contact number for TransUnion is 1-800-663-9980. 

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How to Obtain Free Credit Reports in Canada?

Credit bureaus in Canada provide you with a free copy of your credit report once every year if you request it. Here is the process for obtaining the same. 

Equifax Canada Free Credit Reports

Contact: 1-800-465-7166, and use the interactive response system of Equifax. 

When you contact the given number, you will have to verify your identity with the help of your social insurance number, and the report will then be mailed to your provided address. 

By email: You first have to download the Credit Report Request Form and then mail it with 2 government provided IDs on:

Equifax Canada Co. National Consumer Relations, Box 190, Montreal, Quebec H1S 2Z2.

In-person: There is an office of Equifax in Toronto, Halifax, Charlottetown. You can visit these offices and get your free credit report upon request. 

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TransUnion Canada Free Credit Report

Here are the ways to obtain the free credit report from TransUnion:

Online: Sign up on the website to look at your report. 

In-person: You can get your credit report by visiting the offices of TransUnion in Halifax and Burlington. 

Through the Mail: Fill out the Consumer Request Form, attach 2 IDs, out of which one has to be government issues, add your address, name, signature, DOB. 

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Ways to Get a Free Credit Score in Canada

You can acquire your credit score from TransUnion and Equifax. This service is usually rendered with paid monitoring services, but you can also get it without any cost. 

The companies that provide free credit scores are:

  • Mogo: This is a fintech company that gives you the monthly credit score when you sign up for their free prepaid card, known as MogoCard. 
  • Borrowell: You can get weekly updates on the Equifax credit score and credit report.
  • Credit Karma: It provides monthly updates for your TransUnion credit score. 

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Why is Credit Score Different for Different Bureaus?

The discrepancies in the credit score of TransUnion and Equifax are due to:

  • Some lenders report your credit information to only one agency while some report it to both agencies. That means if a credit bureau does not have your information, it will have a different score. 
  • The scoring models of credit bureaus differ and lead to different scores.

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How to Correct an Error on the Credit Report?

If you see any mistakes or errors in your credit report, you can raise a dispute for the wrong information portrayed in your credit score to your credit bureaus.

To reach TransUnion, call on 1-800-663-9980, and report the inaccurate information on your report. 

For Equifax, you have to fill out an online application and send it by mail. 

Read: Your Guide on How to Dispute Credit Card Errors in Canada!

The Bottom Line

The top credit bureaus in Canada are crucial for lenders and you to keep an eye on the changes in your creditworthiness. It helps to find the gaps where you can take counter steps and raise your credit score, which makes you more eligible for desired loans. Hence, you should keep assessing your reports for any misinformation or way to improve your score.

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Devanshee Dave

Devanshee is a staff writer at YourFirst.ca. She is a finance enthusiast and has completed her Master’s degree in Mass Communication & Journalism. She has worked as a journalist in a local business newspaper, multiple start-ups as well as finance and economy-related online media houses.

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