In the past, checking your credit score was a clunky and drawn out process. But thanks to technology, accessing your credit history is quite easy and safe now.
Learning how to check your credit score for free and how it’s calculated is an important aspect of establishing healthy finances. And you don’t really have an excuse to put this off any longer.
Here are five ways you can check your credit score for free every month — no strings attached.
1. Join a credit score startup service
The most common way to keep tabs on your credit score is by using a third-party service.
In the past decade, several credit score startups have broken into the financial market and given consumers access to their credit scores for free.
Remember when you would sign up for a free credit score reporting trial and risk forgetting to cancel your subscription before being charged the following month?
These startups also offer an in-depth look at your credit history. They list important information that helps populates your credit score, past payment history, a summary of all your debt accounts, and more.
All you have to do is create a free account, answer a few questions, and your credit history will begin to populate. You can also download the free mobile app that comes with each service and monitor your credit rating on the go.
2. Access your bank account
Many large financial institutions are rolling out new credit score monitoring features for their customers. It’s usually a free extra benefit for being a personal banking customer with them.
For example, Capital One’s service is called CreditWise and is accessible once you log into your Capital One account.
Chase also recently launched their service called Credit Journey where you can view your credit score, get weekly updates, and receive regular alerts to stay on top of your credit. You can use your existing Chase login information to access this free service.
If you’re not sure whether or not your bank offers this service, take a look at your online account with them. Or, contact customer service and inquire about it. They may have plans to launch it soon, especially since it’s a very in-demand feature for personal banking consumers.
3. Check out your credit cards
In addition to being able to check your credit score for free as a banking customer, nearly all credit card companies offer this feature as well.
Capital One credit card members can access the same CreditWise service as banking members, while Discover credit cards have a built-in FICO monitoring service called Credit Scorecard. In fact, Credit Scorecard is offered to non-Discover customers as well.
If you’re not already a credit card holder, getting your credit score for free is easy this way. Simply sign up for a credit card that has the FICO score monitoring feature, then create your online account.
Once you’re approved, you can view your free FICO score at any time inside your account via their website or mobile app. Many credit cards offer this benefit without an annual fee, so you’ll be able to access your credit score for free.
4. Consider joining Mint
A large part of managing your monthly budget should include monitoring your credit score. That’s why the popular budgeting program, Mint now lets you get your credit score for free.
You can access Mint in just a few minutes by filling out your information and linking your accounts. The service is completely free, and you can start using it to budget your income and expenses, as well as monitor your credit.
Every month your credit score inside your Mint account will be automatically updated. You’ll be able to see the various factors that affect your score, why it went up or down that month, and how to improve it moving forward.
And if you find the free version helpful, you may want to upgrade to the premium version for $16.99 per month.
AnnualCreditReport.com is a completely free way to access your full credit report and FICO score each year. It also gives you access to the credit information from all three credit reporting agencies: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.
Sign up for a free account and input your personal information into their secure browser. While the credit report is completely free, you can only update and access the information from all three credit bureaus once a year.
As consumers, we no longer have to be in the dark about how to check your credit score for free. Check out these tools and services, some of which you may already have access to and don’t know it.
Then, use this knowledge to help build a better credit history, get a good credit score, and manage your finances more successfully.
Interested in a personal loan?Here are the top personal loan lenders of 2018!
|Lender||APR Range||Loan Amount|
|1 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for SoFi.
2 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for Payoff.
3 Important Disclosures for FreedomPlus.
4 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
Citizens Bank Disclosures
5 Important Disclosures for LendingPoint.
6 Important Disclosures for LendingClub.
All loans made by WebBank, Member FDIC. Your actual rate depends upon credit score, loan amount, loan term, and credit usage & history. The APR ranges from 6.16% to 35.89%. For example, you could receive a loan of $6,000 with an interest rate of 7.99% and a 5.00% origination fee of $300 for an APR of 11.51%. In this example, you will receive $5,700 and will make 36 monthly payments of $187.99. The total amount repayable will be $6,767.64. Your APR will be determined based on your credit at time of application. The origination fee ranges from 1% to 6% and the average origination fee is 5.49% as of Q1 2017. There is no down payment and there is never a prepayment penalty. Closing of your loan is contingent upon your agreement of all the required agreements and disclosures on the www.lendingclub.com website. All loans via LendingClub have a minimum repayment term of 36 months or longer.
7 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
8 Important Disclosures for Avant.
* The actual rate and loan amount that a customer qualifies for may vary based on credit determination and other factors. Funds are generally deposited via ACH for delivery next business day if approved by 4:30pm CT Monday-Friday. Avant branded credit products are issued by WebBank, member FDIC.
** Example: A $5,700 loan with an administration fee of 4.75% and an amount financed of $5,429.25, repayable in 36 monthly installments, would have an APR of 29.95% and monthly payments of $230.33
* Important Disclosures for Upgrade Bank.
Upgrade Bank Disclosures
** Accept your loan offer and your funds will be sent to your bank via ACH within one (1) business day of clearing necessary verifications. Availability of the funds is dependent on how quickly your bank processes this transaction. From the time of approval, funds should be available within four (4) business days.
|7.73% – 29.99%||$1,000 - $50,000||Visit Upstart|
|6.26% – 14.87%1||$5,000 - $100,000||Visit SoFi|
|6.99% – 35.97%*||$1,000 - $50,000||Visit Upgrade|
|8.00% – 25.00%2||$5,000 - $35,000||Visit Payoff|
|4.99% – 29.99%3||$10,000 - $35,000||Visit FreedomPlus|
|5.99% – 18.99%4||$5,000 - $50,000||Visit Citizens|
|15.49% – 34.49%5||$2,000 - $25,000||Visit LendingPoint|
|6.16% – 35.89%6||$1,000 - $40,000||Visit LendingClub|
|6.99% – 18.24%7||$5,000 - $75,000||Visit Earnest|
|9.95% – 35.99%8||$2,000 - $35,000||Visit Avant|