Credit Sesame’s Money Mento video explains how to check your credit score online easily.
To improve your credit, you must first check your credit score to get a starting point. Is your credit poor, fair, good, or excellent? What is a good credit score?
Most credit scoring systems have scores that range between 300 and 850. According to Experian (one of the three main credit reporting agencies), the FICO score ranges look like this:
- 300-579: Poor
- 580-669: Fair
- 670-739: Good
- 740-799: Very Good
- 800-850: Exceptional
Once you know your credit score, you should monitor regularly to make sure that it’s moving in the right direction. It’s important to understand how changes in your behavior impact your credit.
Before you start hunting for your credit score, though, you should know that you don’t have just one. There are three main credit reporting agencies and many credit scoring models, so you probably have a lot of credit scores. And they almost certainly vary.
Don’t worry! The main point is that all credit scoring models reward good borrowing behavior and penalize borrowing mistakes. If one score goes up or down, the other ones most likely do the same. The important thing is to consistently track at least one score and to make sure that it’s heading up rather than down.
Does checking your credit hurt your credit score? No! As long as you are checking your own credit through a service, it creates only a “soft” inquiry. A “hard” inquiry, which occurs when you apply for credit, could cause a temporary drop in your credit score.
So, where can you check your credit scores?
You might already have at least one score – many credit card companies and auto lenders put your credit score on your monthly statement. And that might be good enough if your score is already where you want it.
But if you’re trying to improve your credit score, or you’re planning to apply for a loan soon, you probably want to check your score more often – maybe even every day.
Here are some services to check your scores:
Your FICO Score, from FICO
- Pro: FICO is used by many lenders and obtains your credit report from all 3 bureaus
- Con: You have to pay to obtain your credit report and get monthly monitoring, between $19.95 and $39.95 a month
- Pro: It’s the only model developed by all three credit reporting bureaus.
- Another pro: Credit Sesame offers our customers their VantageScore 3.0 through Transunion for free.
- Con: Some lenders may use different scoring models to assess creditworthiness
- Pro: It’s one of the Big 3 credit bureaus
- Con: Costs $9.95 a month for a basic plan and $19.95 a month for a Premier or Family Plan
- Pro: It’s also one of the Big 3. And it’s free.
- Con: If you want your Equifax and TransUnion credit score as well, you have to upgrade to a paid plan for $19.99 a month.
- Pro: The third main credit bureau, offering unlimited access to your TransUnion credit report.
- Con: It’s also a paid service, $24.95 a month
All of those are credible players in the credit scoring business. But did you know that you can check your credit score for FREE using Credit Sesame?
Here’s how to check your score with Credit Sesame daily for free.
- It’s 100% free — we don’t even ask for your credit card details.
- Your score is refreshed DAILY for free
- You get the option to use our Sesame Cash Digital Debit Account and Credit Builder to build your credit score with debit purchases.
- You get FREE credit monitoring and transaction alerts.
- You get a free credit report summary and the option of your full credit report with our premium paid membership.
- You can receive pre-qualified credit card, auto and personal loan offers
- All that and it’s safe and secure. We offer 256-bit data encryption — the same used by banks.
- Our easy-to-use, all-in-one app has over 300,000 five-star reviews.
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Disclaimer: The article and information provided here is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional advice.