Free Credit Score

When looking up your credit score online, you may see a bunch of websites and companies that offer a free credit score to consumers. It looks tempting to sign up, but please keep in mind that many of these free credit score offers are not truly free. In some cases, you must enter your credit card number and it will begin billing you each and every month until you cancel. This is called a rebill and it’s tactic used by many credit score companies in the hopes the consumers won’t know how to cancel or are simply too lazy to cancel. Other companies are just collecting your data to sell off to bigger companies. As you can clearly see, “Free” credit scores are rarely ever actually free.

There are legitimate ways to get your free credit score gov ( online, but you will end up having to pay your hard earned money and you’ll have to navigate through a sea of companies who are more interested in taking your cash than offering you a service. If you are okay with this, then by all means, go ahead and pay to see your credit score. However, the better solution is to get your free credit report instead.

Unlike the score, getting your credit report online truly is free with no strings attached. Federal law mandates that every consumer has the right to view their credit reports once a year from the 3 major credit reporting agencies – Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. It is federal law and the credit reporting agencies must hand over a copy of your credit report with no strings attached. You might as well take advantage of this each and every year to make sure your credit is in good shape and you are in good standing with lenders.

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Why is a report better than a score?

While your score is simply a number that lenders glance at to briefly assess the risk of lending you money, a credit report is a full in-depth look at your current credit and credit history. Looking at your credit score just gives you a snapshot of your credit whereas a free credit report will show you everything you need to know. You can view all your open lines of credit, loans, and who you owe money to.

Furthermore, different credit agencies use different numerical scoring systems to generate your score, so unless you understand the system that was used the score can be pretty meaningless. You may have a 700 score with one company and a 600 score with another. With your far superior credit report, all the information is more or less the same because most major lenders all report to the 3 top agencies.

You can also use this opportunity to look for errors or fraud in your credit. Identity theft is on the rise around the world, so make sure you are looking over your credit with a fine tooth comb to make sure there is no fradulent activity. Just looking at your credit score cannot show you this potentially critical information. When given the choice, always go with the credit report over the score as it is a more accurate and valuable look at the complete picture.