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Tech @ 10: Truly FREE Ways to Keep Tabs on Your Credit!

By: Mikel Lauber
By: Mikel Lauber

With credit a little tighter in our economy, a good credit score can be one of your greatest weapons.  There are also a lot of things affecting people’s credit these days, from unpaid bills to declining limits on credit cards.

 

It’s a good idea for you to take regular looks at your credit report and your credit score, if possible.  You’ve no doubt seen ads for free credit reports, but are they really free?

 

Most of the time, there are strings attached.  But in my experience, there are some free options out there….

 

The Federal Government that the 3 major credit bureaus make your credit report available for free once a year.  The website that handles these annual free requests is www.annualcreditreport.com.  There, you can request your Equifax, Transunion, and Experian credit reports.   You should take a close look at all three, because some accounts can show up on one, but not the others.

 

While that site will show you the full credit report, it won’t give you your actual score.  And while you’ll likely have to pay to see your true, FICO credit score that most lenders will look at when you apply for a loan…. A few sites can give you a pretty good idea of where you stand.

 

The first is Quizzle.com.  Quizzle will give you your score according to Experian.  It also lets you look at your Experian credit report, to see what could be affecting your score.

 

CreditKarma.com is another great site to help you manage your credit score.  It will show you your score according to Transunion.  Another great reason to visit CreditKarma is their ‘Credit Simulator’, that will estimate what would happen to your credit score if you missed a payment, closed a credit card, paid off a card, etc.

 

Again, these sites are truly free.  Quizzle and CreditKarma will try to sell products to you, but they’re all opt-in.  And according to the websites, repeatedly checking your credit score through them will not have a negative impact on your score.

 

Are there other ways you keep tabs on your credit score?  Have you used Quizzle or CreditKarma before?

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