Money: Score a Better Loan

Credit agencies assign you a number. Make sure it's the mark you deserve

Alisa Rowe Kenney knew she had bad credit, but she assumed it was getting better. Then the Florida mother of two ordered a copy of her credit report and discovered just how low she had scored. "I'd been paying my bills on time for seven years, thinking my score was improving," she says.

Last month the Bush Administration proposed changes to the Fair Credit Reporting Act that would make it easier for people like Kenney to avoid such surprises. New provisions to the act, which is set to expire at the end of the year, would allow consumers to get a...

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