I got my free credit reports, but they do not include my credit scores. Can I get my credit score for free too?
Free credit reports provided by the nationwide credit reporting agencies currently do not include free credit scores. However, your credit card company may provide a free score. Be wary of programs offering “free scores” if you enroll – they are generally not really free.
You can purchase your score directly from the credit reporting agencies and scoring companies. However, it’s important to check your credit report to make sure the information is accurate because your credit score is based on the information in your credit report. It’s also important to note that the score you purchase may not be the same as the one lenders use to decide whether to give credit.
Your credit card company may share a credit score with you for free. Some companies include credit scores on your monthly statements.
Creditors (including card issuers) generally have to disclose your credit score (and related information) if they use the score and:
- deny your application,
- increase the cost of your credit, or
- offer you a higher rate than other consumers get from that creditor.
Mortgage lenders also have to disclose your score when they check your score to approve a mortgage loan.
There are other third parties that claim to offer “free” credit scores. However, you should consider the following:
You may need to enroll in a program with a fee or purchase a product to get this “free” credit score. That means it is not really free. Sometimes there is period of time during which you can cancel without paying a fee. These programs are not free unless you remember to cancel within the allowed period of time.
Tip: Take care when sharing personal information with companies that do not already have access to it.