Experian offers free credit report, FICO Score 8, and credit monitoring at freecreditscore.com

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Experian acquired freecreditscore.com (which used to have a monthly fee) and is now offering free credit report, FICO Score 8, and credit monitoring. The report and score are updated "every 30 days on sign in". I'm guessing it means it's not automatically updated every 30 days if you sign in less frequently.

The recently released Android/Apple app from Experian only included a free report and offered the score for purchase. This website includes the score for free. However, according to some comments, the free score is only given to new users. If you already have an account you may want to register another or close the existing account first. No data points yet for how to fix it for existing users.

This is better than the free score from Discover I posted a month ago. Unlike freecreditscore, freescorecard shows utilization and "Age of credit", but these items are easy to figure out.
Update:  not sure if I just missed it before, but I can now see utilization and length of credit history on the Overview page at freecreditscore.com. This makes the Discover offer totally obsolete.

My source: DoC

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Closing account may not be enough. I did the free trial on freecreditscore.com when it was a fee service. I had to create a different UserID in order to signup for this deal. For those who want a different version of FICO score, freecreditscore.com will sell you some other versions of FICO commonly used for mortgages or car loans for an added fee. freecreditscore.com also offers all three credit reports for a fee.

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Presentation of the report information is a bit different, but can be figured out quickly. Utilization and "Age of credit" are included in the supplied information .. just a bit differently.

Good to know. I wasn't sure if it would let the same person get more than one username, which is why I thought you'd need to close the existing account first.

Nice. This, together with CreditKarma, gives users access to their credit reports monthly (I believe CK can update weekly, but I only sign in once per month).

CreditKarma saves all your credit reports (by date). Sometimes I find myself having to look back at my credit report from months prior. Hopefully this service also keeps them.

Is there a way to monitor credit of a 6 years old?

starcrossed said:   Is there a way to monitor credit of a 6 years old?
 I got one of those $50 comprehensive credit reports. There was a mortgage from some obscure agency, that I "obtained" when I was 3 years old.
Wish I would have known about that when I was in college. It would have been very impressive to the ladies.

Hmmm, they can't find my info given my address and SSN? Not worth it.

Amex also gives free credit score.

eswarjj said:   Hmmm, they can't find my info given my address and SSN? Not worth it.
  
I keep getting "Oops, sorry" errors with a phone number.

Called in twice and neither CSR knew what to do, suggested registering new accounts at both freecreditscore.com and Experian.com. Neither would work :/

Thanks for the tip!
It's interesting to compare the scores between the three bureaus. Equifax and Transunion are very close, but Experian shows a much lower score :/

Theoretically the scores should be the same if the information on the reports is the same. All three of my reports are slightly different -- some are either missing some old account or contain accounts that should have fallen off.

Even though an account in good standing usually falls off 10 years after being closed, I don't think this is actually required by law. I suspect that some of my accounts kept reporting monthly status to at least one bureau for many years after they'd been closed, and apparently the 10-year timer started when the account stopped reporting.

Is this the same kind of deal as it was with creditKarma that consumer receives free credit info in exchange for authorizing numerous other companies to see and use his/her credit data?

DWooley said:   Is this the same kind of deal as it was with creditKarma that consumer receives free credit info in exchange for authorizing numerous other companies to see and use his/her credit data?I don't believe so, but feel free to review their privacy policy before signing up. My understanding is that they only use PII to market products right on the website, or by email from which you can unsubscribe. The policy doesn't actually say that they use credit bureau information for any purposes, but clearly they use your credit rating on the pages that recommend credit cards.

Thanks.

This site does show the individual accounts which can be useful in spotting errors and seeing which spousal accounts are showing up. I noticed that an account that is joint with my wife is not showing up here, for some reason. I also can see my FIA Fidelity accounts are shown as still open (Elan is taking them over).

I notice they compute the percent utilization for each card, and show in red the ones with high percent utilization, green those that are low, and orange for those in the middle. I guess the high is over 60% (I have a orange for one over 50% but below 60%).

I have heard some scoring systems give weight to the percent utilization on individual cards. This to me does not appear very logical since the high utilization for me reflect  typically a promotional interest rate, or in a few cases a very low limit (I received a good offer to use my Forward cards from CITI after I had reallocated the line away from them to a new card expecting to make little use of them after they cut the reward percentage to a maximum of 2%).

Certainly if lenders see the data presented in this way, these cards stand out (and there is not obvious way a lender can separate out the cases where the interest rate being paid is promotional (say under 2%), and where they are paying the traditional high interest rates on credit cards.

This site also lets you see things like the monthly payment and when the account was open. A smart analysts might be able to deduce from the monthly payment if it is low interest, since the payment usually includes interest plus a little for principle. Thus, a monthly payment that is 1% of the total, could suggest either no interest, or a very low interest rate. 

Also, new cards often have offers and in theory someone might note if it was a new card, that there may have been a promotional interest rate.

The "utilization" portion of FICO has always been a combination of total and individual utilization. It doesn't have to be logical, it's all about the statistical chance of impending trouble.

Interest rate might matter statistically, but the minimum payment calculation is not standard between issuers (and probably not even across different products from the same issuer) and it's not reported, so a deeper analysis you are suggesting may be impossible.

Do you know how much weight goes to each?

Wondering whether it is worth giving up good interests rates to improve credit scores. This might be worthwhile on cards with low limits, if they do no weighting by balance, etc.

I realize there formulas are statistically based, but I wonder why say if someone has $100,000 in credit available, and has used say $25,000 of it, the probability of default would be greater if had borrowed this money through runing up balances of $5,000 on five cards with $5,000 limits (say because of a good promotional rate of 0% on purchases, versus reaching $25,000 by $5,000 on five cards with $20,000 limits.

ProfessorEd said:   Do you know how much weight goes to each?

Wondering whether it is worth giving up good interests rates to improve credit scores. This might be worthwhile on cards with low limits, if they do no weighting by balance, etc.
 

  There is a pretty big weight on single line being near limit (or over 60%?).   I had one low limit card with over 80% limit for BT promo when I refi'd last Feb and had dragged middle score from ~790 to 760.
 
If borderline and looking for mortgages, the one way to "cheat" this component of the score is to use BT promos on Bus cards that don't report to the personal credit report. You still need to manually report the card and the payment goes into DTI, but they won't affect the FICO score.

ProfessorEd said:   Do you know how much weight goes to each?

Wondering whether it is worth giving up good interests rates to improve credit scores. This might be worthwhile on cards with low limits, if they do no weighting by balance, etc.

I realize there formulas are statistically based, but I wonder why say if someone has $100,000 in credit available, and has used say $25,000 of it, the probability of default would be greater if had borrowed this money through runing up balances of $5,000 on five cards with $5,000 limits (say because of a good promotional rate of 0% on purchases, versus reaching $25,000 by $5,000 on five cards with $20,000 limits.
I don't think the weights have ever been published. I also suspect that they're not static -- the total adds up to a fixed 30% (FICO '08) or 20% (Vantage 3.0), but individually they may be on a sliding scale.

I don't think anybody could answer your question. Using multiple credit cards to run up a little debt might require better money management skills than running up a lot of credit on a single card. Or it could be the other way around -- running up just one card may show that you're more responsible.

scripta said:   
I don't think anybody could answer your question. Using multiple credit cards to run up a little debt might require better money management skills than running up a lot of credit on a single card. Or it could be the other way around -- running up just one card may show that you're more responsible.

  There's also a penalty for having any balance reported on more than 1-2 cards. Whether having 3 at 30% than 1 at 90% is better, like you said that can't be answered. I guess someone could guinea pig test it and see which is less bad.
Having $5k showing up on a card with a $20k limit is definitely better than having $5k showing up on a card with a $5500 limit or $2k showing up on two different cards with $4k limits, though.

Creditboards had run some extensive crowdsourced data to come up with 1 card with a balance reported of 1-2% of overall credit limit and all other cards as $0 balance as resulting in the "optimal" score, all other conditions equal.

On a credit-score related note, I applied for a mortgage refi today and weirdly the equifax and transunion scores matched CreditKarma's exactly.  I think by chance... unless they report FICO instead of faco now?



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