Looking to access your credit score for free? Look no further! With Credit Sesame, Credit Karma, & WalletHub, you can now get free credit scores from all three major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, & TransUnion) at no cost!
Your credit score is an indicator of how reliable you are at paying back a loan. The number generally ranges from 300 to 850 and is based on your credit history and your current credit information.
Good or excellent credit means you can be trusted to borrow money, therefore banks are eager to lend you that money and give you a great rate. Poor or fair credit usually entails more risk to the bank, so it will be a lot harder to get a loan. If you manage to get the loan, it will probably be a steep rate.
Applying for credit cards with bonuses will also require that you get a credit check, which is a hard inquiry. This will affect your score negatively for the short term, but responsible use over time will offset that. However, checking or savings account for bonuses will require a soft inquiry, which doesn’t affect your credit score. Thus, we’ve compiled these sites to help you determine your credit score without all that hassle.
All credit scoring models consider the following important factors:
- Payments. Paying bills on time shows reliability.
- Average age of open accounts. The older, the better.
- Credit utilization. In other words, the total amount you owe divided by your total available credit. Less is more.
- Types of credit. Credit cards, mortgage, auto loan or a store account. Having a mix is good.
- Credit inquiries. Apply for credit too often and it sends a red flag to lenders. Keep it to a minimum.
There are two main credit scoring models in the United States: FICO and VantageScore.
FICO Score Vs. VantageScore
Ever heard of the Fair Isaac Corporation? Maybe in its short form: FICO? The most popular type of credit score is the FICO score.
Because the three credit reporting agencies – Equifax, Experian and TransUnion – have varying information about you, each one might come up with a different FICO score.
To make things more confusing, there are different types of FICO scores. Some are used to determine credit card eligibility. Others are used for mortgages or car loans. The formulas also change frequently. For example, FICO Score 8, FICO Score 9 and etc.
The second most popular type of credit score is VantageScore. In 2006, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion came together to create this new score.
Although more and more lenders are relying on VantageScore, it’s still not as utilized as FICO scores. But it’s easier to get your hands on a free VantageScore than a FICO score.
For the most part, you can assume that your VantageScore reflects your FICO score. Both are in sync and will fluctuate up or down together.
Why Check Your Credit Score
Your credit score – and therefore your credit history – has a huge say in many aspects of your life. From mortgage and auto loan rates to apartment and job approval. Your credit is the foundation of all lending and credit decisions.
By checking your credit score and obtaining your credit report, you’ll:
- Have a good sense of your financial “fitness”
- See areas to improve
- Spot mistakes and fraudulent activity
- Reduce the likelihood of rejection
- Get the best possible loan and credit terms
No one is perfect and that includes credit scores. A better score could equate to thousands of dollars a year.
Free Credit Score Sites
By law, you’re entitled to one free credit report every year from each of the three major credit-reporting agencies. The Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act of 2003 requires Equifax, Experian and TransUnion to provide a free credit report upon request through AnnualCreditReport.com.
But, the above gets you your free credit report only. Not your free credit score.
See below for sites that offer free credit scores:
|Website||Credit Agency||Credit Scoring Model||Updated|
|American Express||TransUnion||Vantage Score 3.0||Weekly|
|Bankrate||TransUnion||Vantage Score 3.0||–|
|Capital One (CreditWise)||
|Vantage Score 3.0||Weekly|
|Chase||TransUnion||Vantage Score 3.0||Weekly|
|Credit||Experian||Vantage Score 3.0||Every 14 days|
|Credit Karma||Equifax & TransUnion||Vantage Score 3.0||Weekly|
|Credit Sesame||TransUnion||Vantage Score 3.0||Monthly|
|Discover||Experian & TransUnion||FICO Score 8||Monthly|
|Free Credit Score / Free Credit Report||Experian||FICO Score 8||Monthly|
|NerdWallet||TransUnion||Vantage Score 3.0||Weekly|
|WalletHub||TransUnion||Vantage Score 3.0||Daily|
All sites listed in the table above are open to everyone. Other institutions may also provide free credit scores if you’re a customer. Check your bank, lender or credit company to see if they offer this service.
The sites above will get you your credit score for free. However, there are a couple that stand out for their exceptional features.
Good news! Experian has also released an app that you can download and see your credit score report via your handheld device! You can download the app via iOS or Android.
On top of free membership, you’ll also have access to these great features of Experian:
- A new Experian Credit Report and FICO Score every 30 days on sign in.
- Experian Credit Monitoring Alerts: Includes new inquiries, new accounts, public records, fraud alerts, and personal information updates when added to your Experian credit report.
- Have questions about your Credit Score? Their staff are waiting to help 7 days per week.
Experian also offers credit resources as well whether you’re looking to learn more about credit or simply trying to secure a better rate on credit cards or loans, experian.com has the resources to help you find what you’re looking for. Sign up today!
Credit Sesame offers free credit score based on your TransUnion credit report once a month. You credit score range is from 300-850 for absolutely free with no obligation of any kind. By setting partnerships with banks and mortgage companies, Credit Sesame is an ad-supported if you sign up for a loan or other financial product through the site.
If you have ever taken out money without being able to pay it back in full or on time, this would impact your credit rating in a very meaningful way. It is important that you make payments on any debts you owe, this would be the easiest way to ensure that you are not suffering from the problems that come with a low credit score for the rest of your life. If you have a poor credit score, you would find it difficult to obtain a loan with reasonable rates, opening up a credit card account, or even arranging to have utility services provided to a property.
It is important that you take the steps needed to correct any negative information listed on your credit report. Credit Sesame would allow you to obtain a Free Credit Score that would make it easy for you to see exactly where you stand.
- Get your credit score for free in less than 90 seconds.
- Improve and protect your score with free credit monitoring.
- Checking your credit score doesn’t hurt your credit score.
- You will not be asked for a credit card number.
You will need to provide your personal information and Social Security number to some of these companies, naturally, so be comfortable with that. None of these methods by themselves will affect your credit score as you are requesting them for yourself.
Credit Karma offers free credit score based on your TransUnion credit report on a weekly basis. Same as FICO, the score range from 300-850. They offer insights into improving your credit score, and you can also opt-in to free daily credit monitoring. If you need to find out what your credit score is, look no further than Credit Karma, a complete free credit scoring and ways to improve your credit.
- Truly Free Credit Scores: Get your 100% free credit score instantly, securely and safely. Always free. No credit card required.
- Free Credit Monitoring: Receive daily notifications of important changes to your credit report. Credit monitoring can help protect your credit.
- Account Monitoring: See your real-time transactions and receive notifications about balances, bills, fees and more.
- Reviews & Advice: Get credit-smart with reviews and advice from more than 11 million Credit Karma members.
All of this comes with no cost whatsoever! This is not a trial membership or needing a credit card number to get your score. They have many ways to save you money such as insurance, bank info, and so on. It’s important to find your credit score for making a big purchase such as buying a car or a house. You will not get a hit on your credit report by going through Credit Karma!
The Discover it® offers free FICO® Credit Score on your monthly statement to help you stay on top of your credit. In addition to the free FICO score, you’ll get $50 bonus after first purchase($100 double rewards) along with no annual fee, no overlimit fee, and no foreign transaction fee.
Pay zero late fee on your first late payment and they won’t increase your APR for paying late. Cardholders earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases on rotational categories with free and easy sign-up. And 1% cash back on all other purchases. The new Discover It® Card offers you a free FICO score based on your TransUnion credit report once every month with your statement.
Before, to get your credit score, you would have to sign up for a monthly subscription service trial, so it was always a hassle. To register, you needed to provide your credit card number. If you decide to continue the service, your card would be charged a monthly fee. Nowadays, there are plenty of truly free options.
Applying for a credit card or a loan? You’ll want to look at your credit the way lenders would. Access several free services to see how your credit performs across bureaus and scoring methods.
Regardless of the company or method you choose to use, make sure to check your credit scores and reports regularly to maintain a healthy credit history.