It’s easy to get a free credit report – federal law says we all see credit reports once a year at no cost (here’s how to see your reports). However, it is much harder to get credit card bonuses.
Credit scores are numbers that lenders use to evaluate you as a borrower. These numbers are generated by computers that go through your credit report, and they often differentiate between approval and rejection.
So do you have to pay to find out what your result is?
You will quickly find that companies that advertise free results will intend to charge you sooner or later.
But there are several ways to get really free results (though sometimes you get what you pay for). Let’s dig into our options below.
Types of credit scores
You may be surprised to learn that you have numerous vouchers – not just one. For starters, each credit bureau generates a credit score, and each scoring model creates its own score (and has many points). Before you take it too seriously, find out what the result is.
The most important result now is the score – these are the ones commonly used for the most important loans (such as mortgages, car loans and credit cards). Other results may become increasingly popular, but results are the most valuable results.
Each result can help you understand whether you have “good” or “bad” credit – if your score is high, then it goes well – and what factors may hurt your score. However, the specific number you get may not be helpful if you are not looking at the true result.
Free credit ratings from lenders
Next time, borrow, ask for a free one.
Each time you apply for a loan, your lender most likely receives a score as part of the lending process. Ask your lender to tell you what your result is – they may not know you are curious, and they are generally happy to share that information with you.
In addition to traditional lenders, peer loans and other online lending often provide a free credit score (or some indication of where your score is) if you sign up for your services.
If lenders, based on your credit score, decide not to approve your loan (or choose to offer less favorable terms), they must provide the credit score they used.
It’s easy to get a free credit score when you apply for a loan, but you may want to get a glass more often. Some banks provide free credit scores with monthly updates if you use your credit card. For example, users can see a chart showing how their score has changed over time. Your credit card company regularly checks your credit anyway (to see if they fall during difficult times or if they need to increase their credit limit), so it’s easy to provide this service.
Promotional free credit scores
The internet is a full site that promises free vouchers.
You usually sign up for a trial offer, see your results, and then have to pay a subscription (after a month or more). However, you can unsubscribe and skip payments.
While this method may occasionally give you a free credit score, you have to jump through a lot of hoops to do all the trial offers (and you must remember to cancel your subscription to avoid payment). In addition, you submit sensitive personal information to various websites so that your risk of identity theft is increased. Finally, your name and contact information end up in many marketing databases, and you have to pay a price (in the form of a marketing attack) for the coming years.