According to a study carried out by Consumer Action in 2006 the percentage of Americans who had never checked their credit score was 27, an increase from the 23% that had been recorded in 2005. On the same line of thought, 10.1 million US adults were reported as victims of identity fraud in 2003 alone, a situation that saw most of their financial endeavors flushed down the drain simply because their credit scores had been hijacked.
Best Way To Check Credit Score
It is in light of such information that one gets to understand the importance of checking their credit score regularly. Still, there are a number of people who are unaware of the various ways of checking their credit scores, often choosing to ignore the whole thing and hope their auto loan application won’t be declined. The following read offers in-depth information on the best way to check credit score.
When asked, the majority of people confessed that they do not check their credit score simply because they don’t see the need. This should never be the case, for one, checking your credit score regularly reduces the chances of fraud. With the rate of identity fraud on the rise, the best way to ensure someone else isn’t using your account to apply for loans and run large balances, your best shot is by keeping constant watch over your account.
You might think yourself safe but none of the 10.1 million identity fraud victims mentioned above knew what they were in for until they checked. In addition, it pays to be well informed when it comes to your credit score. Instead of going up to your bank and being turned away due to poor credit ratings, it is better to know beforehand where you stand and come up with appropriate plans on how you can improve or maintain your score. Plus, the sooner you know of any errors in your credit score, the earlier you can deal with them and avoid getting yourself into a tight fix.
How You Can Check Your Credit Score
Although there are different types of credit scores, what you really need is your FICO score, this is the type that most lenders use in evaluating how credit worthy you are.
You have the option of using credit bureaus such as Equifax or TransUnion or go for MyFICO.com at the cost of $15.95. There are also websites that offer the services free like Freescore.com and FreeCreditScore.com just to mention a few. However, the problem with free things is that there is always a hidden cost. For instance, using these websites automatically enrolls you into a credit monitoring service which will have you paying $20 every month unless you cancel within the first 7 days.
Still, not all hope is lost, there are a few sites that actually give credit score reports for free with no strings attached. Bankrate.com and Credit.com are some of these sites, still, there is a twist to their services. The credit scores that these sites provide are not completely accurate and are more of estimates. In other words, you won’t be getting your actual FICO score, just something that is close to it. Therefore, it would seem that the only way to your credit score for absolutely free would be in the case that you are turned down for a job or loan because of your credit score in which case the rejecting party will have to present you with your credit score, this is under the financial overhaul Bill that was signed by President Obama in July.
It is therefore quite clear that the best way to check credit score would be by using MyFICO.com, TransUnion or Equifax. Still, expect a slight variation in the scores presented since each credit reporting bureau uses different calculation methods. It is also advisable to always pick the single score option which often costs at most $15.95 to avoid spending more.
Although credit check reports are usually done annually, you do not have to wait that long, for instance when preparing for a major credit-based purchase like a car or home it is always best to check your credit scores 6 months prior to your purchase and clear up any discrepancies that may prevent you from getting the object of your desire.
Hopefully, the above read has provided you with adequate information on how you can find out what your credit score is