Best Credit Score Apps: What is The Most Accurate Credit Score App?
You hear your friend talking about how she opened a rewards credit card and scored a free trip to Europe. Now you want to do the same, but when your friend asks about your credit score, you’re confused.
If you’re like many of those in the U.S. who don’t know their credit score, you’re not alone. Given that this three-digit number is based on your credit history (and your ability to get a loan or open a new credit card), it’s pretty important we know what it is.
Plus, monitoring your credit on a regular basis is helpful for many aspects of our financial lives. Luckily, there are lots of resources–many on your smartphone–that can help you with credit monitoring. We’ve highlighted some of the best ones for you to try out.
So What Are The Best Credit Apps
Take a look at the pros and cons of each and decide which you want to use.
Perhaps one of the most well-known apps, Credit Karma is a totally free service. You’ll get credit scores based on VantageScore 3.0 provided through Equifax and TransUnion, similar to your FICO score. You’ll also learn what contributed to your score including credit utilization ratio, credit age, new credit, payment history and types of credit. In addition to monitoring, you’ll also get a credit simulator where you’ll be able to input different scenarios to see how they’d impact your score.
You’ll be able to see your VantageScore from TransUnion for free from Credit Sesame. There is also a feature called the Free Credit Report Card, offering letter grades based on credit age, usage and payment history. Plus, you’ll get alerts if there are changes to your credit. If you’re looking for a new loan or credit card, their My Borrowing Power feature shows you how much credit you can get based on your account information and current score.
Experian Boost is a free service that helps you track your FICO score. It also helps those with low or no credit history build theirs by factoring in phone bill and utility payments into your Experian credit score.Users will also get alerts when there’s been a change to your score and to see how it’s been improving.
This is a free companion app to the myFICO subscription–starts at $29.95 a month–which monitors your score and gives you reports. The app will show the current FICO score with all three major credit bureaus as well as how it’s changed over time. Users will also get push notifications when there are changes on their credit report, such as an increase or decrease in their score and new account inquiries.
TransUnion has both paid and free credit monitoring services. The paid option includes instant alerts and unlimited credit reports. The free app can be just as useful, offering you updates on your credit score. Their TransUnion Online Credit Score Simulator allows you to run simulations to see how high your TransUnion credit score could be based on various scenarios, for example, if you pay off a loan or make a late payment.
What is Credit Monitoring?
Credit monitoring is where a service provider notifies you (typically within 24 hours) when there’s been a change made on your credit report. It could either be via push notifications, email or text message. That way, you can keep up-to-date with what’s going on.
Some of the types of activity that you may be notified about–especially when there’s suspected fraud–can include new accounts, new public records, hard inquiries, and existing account changes.
Why Should I Monitor My Credit Score?
There are plenty of reasons why monitoring your credit is important, the influx of identity theft being one of them. If you see any red flags then you need to act on them right away. For example, if someone is trying to open an account in your name, that means you could be a victim of identity theft.
Monitoring your credit score also helps you assess how likely you are to be approved for credit. This three-digit number shows your creditworthiness to potential lenders and credit issuers as it shows how likely you are to pay back your loan. Having this understanding means you may have a higher chance of approval and could get the best rates and terms, saving you thousands of dollars.
What Are The Credit Score Ranges?
There are two credit scoring models: FICO and VantageScore. The former is the most commonly used but both have similar scoring scales that range from 300 to 850. The higher the number, the more creditworthy you are to lenders.
Does Checking Your Credit Score Lower It?
The short answer is no. Checking your own credit score (even on credit scoring apps) counts as a soft inquiry. Your credit score could be affected when you complete an application for a new loan or credit card. These are called hard inquiries, which show up on your credit report.
What is The Most Accurate Credit Score App?
The truth is that there isn’t one credit scoring app that is the most accurate. Plus, lenders and issuers may use different scores to determine your eligibility for credit–there are also other factors taken into consideration such as your income and other current debt.
However, using a credit scoring app can help give you a fairly good idea where you stand. Most apps use either FICO or VantageScore or a combination of both (looks at all three major credit bureaus). The ones below are reputable and can offer you insight into what your credit score is–both free and paid options. They’re not placed in any particular order nor do we think one is better than the other.
You Really Don’t Have Anything to Lose
What’s so great about the above credit scoring apps is that you can check them on the go. That way you’ll get notifications of major credit events and know about fraudulent activity as soon as possible. Plus, it can help you be prepared the next time you’re looking to take out a loan or open a new rewards credit card.
Most of the apps mentioned above are free, so you can certainly try a few of them out to see which features you like best.
Here’s to helping you build your credit score.