Did you know that checking your credit scores and credit reports is one of the first steps toward learning more about your credit history?
You can request your credit reports for free every 12 months from each of the three major credit reporting companies. However, credit reports currently do not include free credit scores.
The good news is that over the last few years, many financial institutions have started to offer consumers free access to one of their credit scores.
Check out the updated list of companies and organizations that said they offer free credit scores to learn about your options for accessing one of your credit scores free of charge.
Why do I have different credit scores?
You might find that you have access to credit scores from more than one company and that these scores are slightly different. That’s okay. Keep in mind that you don’t have just one credit score—many credit scores are calculated and available to you, as well as to lenders.
Your credit scores vary based on the scoring model, the date when they are computed, the type of loan product, and the credit reporting company data used to calculate them.
The initial credit score you obtain from a company may or may not be different from the one that company, and other businesses, later use to make credit decisions about you. Check out the infographic to see more.
Where can I turn to see one of my credit scores free of charge?
A few types of organizations responded that they offer free credit scores.
- Credit card issuers provide some of their customers free access to one of their credit scores. If your credit card company is on the list, you may have access to free credit scores. Check your online account portal or mobile app to see if you already receive free access. If your company is not on the list, check the company’s website to see if they offer this service.
- Financial institutions have also started to provide access to free credit scores to customers who use financial products besides credit cards. If your financial institution is on the this list, you may have access to free credit scores. Check your online account portal or mobile app for your deposit or checking account, loan, or mortgage to see if you already receive free access.
- Nonprofit credit and financial counseling providers are now able to offer free credit scores to the people they serve. Check out the list or reach out to a local nonprofit credit and financial counseling provider in your community to see if they offer this service.
- Other companies offer this service to the general public. See the list of companies that said they offer this service.
Why is the list being released?
Credit scores can provide a helpful benchmark for understanding your credit health. The purpose of the list is to make it easier for people to understand how they can access and use their credit scores to help manage their financial lives.
In November 2017, a notice was published on the Federal Register’s public website asking companies to state if they want to be included in the update to a list of companies that responded and said they offer consumers free access to credit scores. The updated list is based on voluntary responses to this notice.
The accuracy of third-party information is not guaranteed and listing a company does not constitute an endorsement. There may be other resources that also serve your needs.
This article by the CFPB was distributed by the Personal Finance Syndication Network.
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