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Old Mar 8, 12, 12:10 pm   #1
 
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Question to freeze or not to freeze before apps

I have 14 inquiries on my EX report (far fewer on EQ and TU) and am gearing up to apply for 5 or 6 cards soon. My question is should I put a freeze on my EX report, in an attempt to divert inquiries to EQ or TU?

I assume there are 3 possible outcomes of each app with a bank that normally uses EX in California if I put the freeze on:
a) Lender just decides to use EQ or TU
b) Lender says we can't process your app - give us a pin to see your EX report or no card (which I would then provide)
c) Lender straight rejects due to lack of access to EX

I imagine most fall into the b) bucket, which is effectively the same as not having a freeze right? But if ANY lender happens to go with option a) then it seems to makes sense to freeze, no?
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Old Mar 9, 12, 10:24 am   #2
 
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ok with all the cc's being applied for on this board i know someone has some experience with credit freezes
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Old Mar 9, 12, 11:15 am   #3
 
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I haven't done it myself, but I've thought about it. I posted something on this on another thread a week or so ago, but that was about freezing all 3. I think the way it works is your current creditors can pull whichever bureau they want, so they might be able to pull your Experian even if you have it frozen. I'm not 100% sure on that, that might fall under your scenario "B". As far as new creditors, from what I've read aside from Amex they will pull whatever bureau you have unfrozen. If you do try this, report back on what happened.
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Old Mar 9, 12, 4:15 pm   #4
 
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Originally Posted by longhorn11 View Post
As far as new creditors, from what I've read aside from Amex they will pull whatever bureau you have unfrozen. If you do try this, report back on what happened.
well i hope that is exactly how it works! i'll definitely report back next week.
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Old Mar 9, 12, 4:24 pm   #5
 
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well i hope that is exactly how it works! i'll definitely report back next week.
Also if you could post how quickly you were able to freeze your Experian. I've read that some can do it online and others have to mail things in. Thanks!
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Old Mar 9, 12, 7:43 pm   #6
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If I were the bank, I would wonder why you froze one and not the others. If you have been the victim of identity theft, you should have frozen all three.
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Old Mar 9, 12, 7:52 pm   #7
 
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But if not a victim of ID theft, then like me, you just don't want to spend the exta $10 to freeze the 3rd.
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Old Mar 13, 12, 3:06 pm   #8
 
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Also if you could post how quickly you were able to freeze your Experian. I've read that some can do it online and others have to mail things in. Thanks!
the process is all online for EX - freezing, getting temporary single use pins for creditors to poke in past the freeze, and permanent unfreeze all worked instantly for me.

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Originally Posted by cbn42 View Post
If I were the bank, I would wonder why you froze one and not the others. If you have been the victim of identity theft, you should have frozen all three.
in my case i was originally interested because at&t pulled my credit (twice) when i opened a uverse internet account without asking or notifying and that ticked me off.

so here is my report - i went 6/7 so far with the apps, but only 1 instant approval. the last one is still pending and not necessarily declined but didn't sound great.

it seems that Chase shows a little flexibility (they approved my app even with my freeze in place and without a temporary pin) - i believe they used EQ instead of EX when they did it manually during my follow up phone call. Barclays used TU. Amex insisted on EX but the temporary pin worked for them. BofA insisted on EX and informed me they don't do the temporary pin for credit report access thing. Citi (biz) required EX and couldn't make the pin thing work so i did end up entirely unfreezing, which then made BofA go through also.

end result - the freeze made it more drawn out than it needed to be and most creditors wouldn't budge from the report they wanted. using the temporary pin thing would be better facilitated by applying over the phone initially in order to provide the pin to the agent and avoid initial declines and extra phone calls. Chase seemed to just move over to EQ that was available though. it was worth the lesson for me.

i'll verify all of this next time i get my reports.
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Old Mar 13, 12, 3:41 pm   #9
 
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Thanks for the report back, I was thinking about this yesterday. It's interesting that Chase showed flexibility, I figured Amex would want Experian. You would think BofA and Citi would be willing to pull from something other than Experian.
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Old Mar 13, 12, 7:56 pm   #10
 
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Originally Posted by longhorn11 View Post
Thanks for the report back, I was thinking about this yesterday. It's interesting that Chase showed flexibility, I figured Amex would want Experian. You would think BofA and Citi would be willing to pull from something other than Experian.
I've been doing this for years and my results have been the same. Chase is the only one that will pull something other than the one they want for my area. AMEX, Citi, and BofA all insist on pulling Experian. They simply cancel the application after 30 days if I do not unfreeze it for them.
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Old Mar 13, 12, 8:11 pm   #11
 
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I've been doing this for years and my results have been the same. Chase is the only one that will pull something other than the one they want for my area. AMEX, Citi, and BofA all insist on pulling Experian. They simply cancel the application after 30 days if I do not unfreeze it for them.
What's your opinion on it? I'm assuming that since you've been doing it for a while it's worth the trouble. Does it make it easier to get the Chase apps approved? Given your username I'm assuming we're in the same area (or maybe you just like Dallas ). It does seem like everyone pulls experian around here, only PenFed has pulled Equifax (which they pull exclusively).
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Old Mar 13, 12, 8:33 pm   #12
 
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Originally Posted by longhorn11 View Post
What's your opinion on it? I'm assuming that since you've been doing it for a while it's worth the trouble. Does it make it easier to get the Chase apps approved? Given your username I'm assuming we're in the same area (or maybe you just like Dallas ). It does seem like everyone pulls experian around here, only PenFed has pulled Equifax (which they pull exclusively).
It's worth it for me because Chase has so many cards with bonuses. Otherwise I would have 8 more pulls on my Experian report. As it is I have 8 on TU (where Chase goes when I freeze the other two), 15 on Experian (AMEX, Citi, BofA), and a couple on Equifax from credit unions.
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Old Mar 14, 12, 7:33 am   #13
 
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I have a freeze on all 3 credit bureaus. I alternate with unfreezing EX or EQ temporary so I can apply for a credit card. I have had no problem calling Chase or Bank of America to let them know to check the credit Bureau I wanted if i were not instantly approved.
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Old Mar 14, 12, 9:28 am   #14
 
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Great topic. Keep in mind that freezing your credit report does not prevent existing creditors from accessing your report. Also, even with a freeze, your report can be pulled for prescreening purposes.

But the bottom line is that freezing all three credit reports is the best way to have control over who is accessing your reports or not (both fraudulent and just unwanted banks).

You can freeze and unfreeze your accounts for each of the three bureaus. Here are the links below:

Transunion
To freeze your report: http://freeze.transunion.com
For more information: http://www.transunion.com/personal-c...t-freezes.page

Equifax
To freeze your report: https://www.freeze.equifax.com
For more information:
http://www.equifax.com/answers/help/...y-freeze/en_cp
https://help.equifax.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/75/
https://help.equifax.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/159/

Experian
To freeze your report: www.experian.com/freeze/
For more information:
https://www.experian.com/freeze/center.html
http://www.experian.com/consumer/security_freeze.html

And finally, keep in mind that freezing your report will likely interfere with any credit monitoring services that you are using. Practically speaking, you'll have to choose between one or the other.
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Old Mar 14, 12, 10:53 am   #15
 
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Great topic. Keep in mind that freezing your credit report does not prevent existing creditors from accessing your report.
I was under this impression also, but that is not what the folks at Amex and BofA told me during my apps. I have credit established with both of them and neither could pull my frozen EX report. I also asked a rep from EX about this and he said that for NEW credit lines even existing creditors are blocked from accessing your report.
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