• Alex Thomas

How can we monitor our credit for free?

Welcome to my post “What are Some Ways to Monitor Our Credit for Free?” In this post I will be sharing some of the ways we can monitor our credit. Credit is important, and it can be the difference between paying hundreds vs. thousands of dollars more for mortgages, car payments, or even loans. For example, someone with a credit score of 574 will more than likely get a higher interest rate than someone with a credit score of 785. Here are some ways you can monitor your credit for FREE. Before we begin, I have a disclaimer. 


Disclaimer: This blog may contain affiliate links below and I may receive commissions for purchases made through links in this post, but these are services that I highly recommend. I will not put anything on my blogs that I have not verified or personally used. This post is based on my personal opinion, experience, and my personal research and is for educational purposes only. If you are seeking further guidance please see a professional expert. To view my full disclaimer, Click Here.


I am not a licensed financial expert. Please be sure to reach out to a licensed financial expert to help you understand your personal credit report and score. This blog post shares free options for credit monitoring. Please research and find what free credit monitoring works best for you. 

 

Free Ways to Monitor Our Credit 


Download your Annual Credit Report- One way to monitor your score for free is to order your free annual credit report. You can receive your free online credit score by going to www.AnnualCreditReport.com. Click on “request your free credit score” and the website will prompt you to type in your personal information and ask you a few questions to confirm your identity. You are only able to get one free credit report a year. Due to the pandemic you can get free credit monitoring more than once, but this feature may end at some point. You can access your credit report from this website as well as from the actual credit bureau websites. 


*Side note- Please use a protected browser when accessing your credit report! 

Some banks provide your free FICO credit scores- Some banks provide your free FICO scores on your online banking app and website as a perk of being their customer. Most banks that offer this benefit will share your FICO score and it’s usually the score from Transunion and Experian. Normally, they don’t provide too many details or breakdowns of your score or credit history. It’s just an FYI on your score, but it is a free way to monitor your credit score at least. 


Credit Karma- Credit Karma is an app that I’ve used for years to help keep up with my credit history information. I used to pay for credit monitoring with each credit bureau, but I felt that it was a waste of money when there were ways I could get credit monitoring for free. Credit Karma uses the Vantage score system which ranges from Exceptional 750-850, Very good 700-749, Good 650-699, fair 550-649, to poor 549-300.  www.creditkarma.com


*Side Note- Your Vantage score is not the same as your FICO score. Lenders use the FICO score to determine your loan eligibility. The FICO and Vantage scoring systems have slightly different score ranges. For example, you can have a Vantage credit score that is considered exceptional, whereas that same score would be considered only very good under the FICO scoring system.



Credit Sesame- Credit Sesame is my favorite free credit monitoring app. I use their platform more than credit karma. Credit Sesame offers a lot more information about your credit score. If you are looking for an app to monitor your credit that provides breakdowns and explanations about what things mean, Credit Sesame is an AWESOME app for that! www.creditsesame.com


*Side note- Credit Sesame is powered by Transunion. Credit Karma gives you both TransUnion and Equifax credit information but does not have the extra information that Credit Sesame has to offer. 


Experian- Experian is a great way to monitor your Experian credit report. You can get all three bureaus, but you will have to pay for that separately unfortunately. The thing I really like about Experian is that they provide your FICO score vs. the Vantage score which Credit Sesame and Credit Karma provide. www.experian.com


Credit Wise by Capital One- Credit Wise by Capital One offers free credit monitoring as well. Their website does break down your credit report and helps you to understand your credit! I personally haven’t been using their platform, but you can give them a try and let me know what you think about Credit Wise. www.creditwise.com/captialone


CREDIT SCORE RANGES

 FICO SCORE- Exceptional- 850-800, Very Good 799-740, Good 739-670, Fair 669-580, Very Poor 579-300

VANTAGE SCORE- Exceptional 750-850, Very Good 700-749, Good 650-699, Fair 550-649, and Poor 549-300. 


Thank you for reading my post “What are some ways to monitor our credit for free?” I hope that this post has given you some options to stay on top of your credit without having to pay 34.99 like I was paying for credit monitoring at one point. If there is a website that offers free credit monitoring that’s not on the list, please feel free to comment below. Feel free to share and if you are new to Millennial Oaks please subscribe! Click here for my next post “ Breaking Down a Credit Report!”. 

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