Check Your Credit Score Online for Free: Credit Karma Review

by Shawanda Greene

Have you been to AnnualCreditReport.com to order a free copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus?

If you haven’t, you should do so once a year.

If you have, then you’re aware that AnnualCreditReport.com does NOT offer a free credit score along with your free credit report.

Lenders use credit scores to make several decisions–everything from how much interest to charge to the size of your down payment to the length of the loan period.

Check the details in your credit report periodically, but don’t ignore your credit score as it reveals a clearer picture of how lenders see you.

Too often, “free” scores come at a hefty price. Many companies claim they’ll let you check your credit score online for free IF you sign up for a trial membership. After the trial period ends, you’re charged a monthly fee.

Fortunately, a handful companies offer a no strings attached, complimentary credit score. Credit Karma is one of them.

It’s not perfect, but in my opinion, Credit Karma is the best free credit score site.

What’s to like about Credit Karma?

Totally free. Register for a Credit Karma account, and leave your credit card tucked away in your wallet. You won’t need it.

As you may already know, countless credit scoring models exist. Therefore, your score depends on the algorithm used to calculate it. When you sign up for a Credit Karma account, you’ll gain access to three different credit scores: a TransRisk New Account Score, a VantageScore, and an auto insurance score.

  • The TransRisk score is computed by TransUnion using their own proprietary scoring system.
  • The VantageScore was created by the three major credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion). According to Experian.com, “VantageScore is the most consistent, predictive and accurate measure of consumer creditworthiness in the market.”
  • The Auto Insurance Score was designed to predict the likelihood that you’ll file a claim against an insurer. Believe it or not, people with mediocre credit cost insurance companies more money than those with stellar credit.

Personalized advice: Credit Karma not only gives you free credit scores, but it tells you how to improve them.

One of my favorite features of the web site is the Credit Report Card–an easy-to-read summary of your credit report.

Based on your credit score, you’ll receive an overall letter grade ranging from A to F.

Additionally, factors that impact your score such as your percentage of on-time payments, number of applications for new credit, and  average age of credit lines are given their own letter grade.

Below is an example of my Credit Report Card.

Snapshot of my Credit Report Card

Use the My Credit Simulator to predict how certain actions will affect your credit score.

Let’s say I close my oldest credit card which happens to be with Bank of America because I hate them. Although the simulator estimates my score will only drop eighteen points, the move would put me dangerously close to the “B” credit range. As much as I despise BoA, I’ll leave the account open until they charge an annual fee.

Close your oldest credit card account

Daily credit monitoring: Credit Karma will email you if there are any significant changes to your TransUnion credit report. Address issues immediately if you’re notified of suspicious activity.

Unlimited credit scores: Check your credit score as many times as you like. Inquiries on your credit report only hurt your score when you apply for credit. So don’t worry about how often you view your credit score.

Safe and Secure: Credit Karma uses bank-level security to protect your personal information.

What’s not to like about Credit Karma?

Uses information from only one of the three major credit bureaus: Credit scores provided by Credit Karma are based off of information on your TransUnion credit report only. Some creditors report to one or two bureaus. Without scores from Experian and Equifax, you’re left with an incomplete picture of your credit risk profile.

Provides lesser used credit scores: According to Zillow.com, 70% to 80% of lenders use a version of the FICO scoring model to make credit decisions. As mentioned earlier, you’ll receive three credit scores, none of which are a FICO score.

Need to provide your social security number: I don’t know about you, but I’m stingy with my social security number. I’ve heard too many horrifying stories about people who were victims of identity theft. But honestly, I signed up for a Credit Karma account on October 18, 2008, and no one has stolen my identity.

In relation to how your social security number is used and stored, Credit Karma has the following to say:

In order to retrieve your first credit score, we must use your social security number. We only use your SSN for this first score retrieval, and we do not store it in our database. After this one-time use, we will not need your SSN again and it will not be stored on any of our systems.

So, how does Credit Karma make money?

Similar to most for-profit businesses, Credit Karma likes to earn money. Instead of charging consumers for their services, they use information available in your credit report to recommend targeted offers supported by their advertisers.

The Verdict

If you borrow money or plan on borrowing money, sign up for a Credit Karma account.

Even though the company has a few shortcomings, I’ve been happy with their service for almost four years.

Track your score on Credit Karma’s web site, and follow their suggestions to improve your credit history over time.

When you’re in the market for a loan, go to MyFico.com to pull your TransUnion and Equifax FICO scores. I didn’t forget Experian. Shamefully, they don’t make FICO scores available to consumers.

Disclosure: If you sign up for Credit Karma using a link on my web site, I’ll receive a commission and fully appreciate the love. :)

Did you enjoy this article?
Subscribe to Our Newsletter
Sign up for our weekly newsletter to receive exclusive wealth building tips and a FREE ebook, Curb Your Consumerism: 75 Secret Strategies to Waste Less, Live Well, and Save More Money.

Free copy of Curb Your Consumerism: 75 Secret Strategies to Waste Less, Live Well, and Save More Money
Exclusive wealth building tips delivered directly to your inbox
We will NEVER send you spam
Enter your name and email below to get INSTANT ACCESS to my free eBook and weekly newsletter!

{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

Modest Money July 5, 2012 at 1:12 PM

Considering it’s a free service, I think it would be worth signing up. Sure it doesn’t check all 3 credit bureaus, but at least it provides some level of protection. If you want a credit score from the other bureaus, you typically have to pay for that service. I do like how it lays out what kind of things may be limiting your credit in an easy to understand format.
Modest Money recently posted..9 Savings Tips I Don’t RecommendMy Profile


best Loan Deal April 9, 2013 at 9:30 AM

I believe what you typed made a lot of sense. But, what about
this? what if you were to create a killer headline? I am not saying your content is
not good., however what if you added a headline to
possibly grab a person’s attention? I mean How to Check My Credit Score Online for Free | You Have More Than You Think is a little boring. You should glance at Yahoo’s front page and watch how they create article titles
to grab people interested. You might try adding a video or a related picture or two to
get readers excited about everything’ve written. In my opinion, it could bring your blog a little bit more interesting.
best Loan Deal recently posted..best Loan DealMy Profile


Tracee April 13, 2013 at 2:31 AM

Some manufacturers even sell ordinary coconut oil with virgin label.
Eczema or dermatitis is an inflammation of the skin that produces flaking,
scaling and itching in which fluid filled blisters are sometimes present.
The oil from coconut also contains a very rare natural fatty acid called lauric acid.
Tracee recently posted..TraceeMy Profile


Zandra April 22, 2013 at 2:49 PM

However, it does contain some very healthy fatty acids. Most other cooking oils and
fats contain long-chain triglycerides (LCT). All you need do is stop cooking with vegetable oils,
and start cooking with coconut oil.
Zandra recently posted..ZandraMy Profile


best secured loans April 27, 2013 at 8:00 PM

I’ve been browsing on-line more than three hours as of late, yet I by no means discovered any interesting article like yours. It is lovely price enough for me. Personally, if all web owners and bloggers made just right content material as you probably did, the net will be much more useful than ever before.
best secured loans recently posted..best secured loansMy Profile


almond oil uses April 28, 2013 at 8:43 AM

It has a high content of lauric and myristic acids which have a melting point relatively close to the human body temperature.

A good facial moisturizer is a critical part of daily face care routine, and
as part of a facial cream or facial moisture oil, almond oil gives extra nourishment needed without feeling
oily or weighted down. Used in combination with
other vegetable oils to produce a nice, hard bar of soap.
almond oil uses recently posted..almond oil usesMy Profile


home insurance company ratings in texas May 2, 2013 at 3:19 PM

I think that everything published made a ton of sense.
However, think about this, suppose you were to write a killer
headline? I ain’t suggesting your information is not solid., but suppose you added something that grabbed people’s attention?

I mean How to Check My Credit Score Online for Free |
You Have More Than You Think is kinda boring. You might peek at Yahoo’s front page and see how they write news titles to get viewers to open the links. You might try adding a video or a picture or two to get readers interested about everything’ve got to say.

In my opinion, it would make your website a little livelier.
home insurance company ratings in texas recently posted..home insurance company ratings in texasMy Profile


car insurance lapse in va May 4, 2013 at 6:57 PM

Hi there, I enjoy reading through your article post. I like to write a
little comment to support you.
car insurance lapse in va recently posted..car insurance lapse in vaMy Profile


Meagan May 4, 2013 at 10:11 PM

Hello to every one, because I am actually eager of reading
this website’s post to be updated on a regular basis. It contains nice material.
Meagan recently posted..MeaganMy Profile


nerdfrenzy.com May 6, 2013 at 5:07 AM

My coder is trying to persuade me to move to .net from PHP.

I have always disliked the idea because of the costs.
But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using Movable-type on a number of websites for about a year and am nervous
about switching to another platform. I have heard very
good things about blogengine.net. Is there a way I can transfer all my wordpress posts into it?
Any kind of help would be greatly appreciated!
nerdfrenzy.com recently posted..nerdfrenzy.comMy Profile


Krystle May 21, 2013 at 5:23 AM

I may get around to this myself sometime, should I
get funding.
Krystle recently posted..KrystleMy Profile


cheap car insurance for 18 year old drivers June 7, 2013 at 12:48 AM

I don’t know whether it’s just me or if everyone else experiencing problems with your site.
It looks like some of the text on your posts are running off the screen.
Can someone else please provide feedback and let me know if
this is happening to them as well? This might be a
problem with my web browser because I’ve had this happen previously. Many thanks
cheap car insurance for 18 year old drivers recently posted..cheap car insurance for 18 year old driversMy Profile


best Rate loan June 7, 2013 at 7:02 PM

Informative read, especially comment #six I think it was. Hopefully I’ll remember it.
best Rate loan recently posted..best Rate loanMy Profile


best tenant loans June 8, 2013 at 8:04 PM

Off for a scan on my fingers, can ardly type with this break.

Has anyone ever tried pressing the keys
quickly with a broken finger!?.
best tenant loans recently posted..best tenant loansMy Profile


aami car insurance third party property June 15, 2013 at 7:52 AM

It’s actually a cool and helpful piece of information. I’m glad that you simply shared this helpful info with us.
Please keep us informed like this. Thank you for sharing.
aami car insurance third party property recently posted..aami car insurance third party propertyMy Profile


cheapest car insurance in mauritius June 18, 2013 at 9:11 PM

whoah this weblog is fantastic i like reading your posts.
Stay up the good work! You recognize, lots of people are searching around
for this info, you can help them greatly.
cheapest car insurance in mauritius recently posted..cheapest car insurance in mauritiusMy Profile


what does contents insurance usually cover June 21, 2013 at 10:43 PM

Hello there, just became aware of your blog through Google,
and found that it’s really informative. I’m going to
watch out for brussels. I’ll appreciate if you continue this in future. A lot of people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!
what does contents insurance usually cover recently posted..what does contents insurance usually coverMy Profile


free credit report June 22, 2013 at 11:05 PM

Excellent web site. A lot of useful info here. I’m sending it to several friends ans additionally sharing in delicious. And of course, thanks on your effort!
free credit report recently posted..free credit reportMy Profile


www.findmelandlordsinsurance.com June 27, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Excellent web site you have got here.. It’s difficult to find good quality writing like yours these days. I truly appreciate people like you! Take care!!
http://www.findmelandlordsinsurance.com recently posted..http://www.findmelandlordsinsurance.comMy Profile


easycontentsinsurance.com June 27, 2013 at 5:53 PM

Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to mention that I’ve really enjoyed browsing your weblog posts. After all I will be subscribing in your rss feed and I am hoping you write again very soon!
easycontentsinsurance.com recently posted..easycontentsinsurance.comMy Profile


health insurance premiums tax deductible canada June 29, 2013 at 12:18 PM

Woah! I’m really digging the template/theme of this blog. It’s simple, yet effective.
A lot of times it’s very difficult to get that “perfect balance” between user friendliness and visual appeal. I must say that you’ve done a awesome job with this.
Also, the blog loads super fast for me on Firefox. Superb Blog!
health insurance premiums tax deductible canada recently posted..health insurance premiums tax deductible canadaMy Profile


cheap insurance for young drivers July 6, 2013 at 9:43 AM

I like the helpful information you provide in your articles.
I will bookmark your weblog and check again here frequently.
I’m quite sure I will learn plenty of new stuff right here! Good luck for the next!
cheap insurance for young drivers recently posted..cheap insurance for young driversMy Profile


aaa car insurance las vegas nv July 9, 2013 at 7:25 PM

I like it whenever people get together and share views.
Great website, keep it up!
aaa car insurance las vegas nv recently posted..aaa car insurance las vegas nvMy Profile


affordable car insurance in michigan July 10, 2013 at 2:00 PM

Outstanding post however I was wondering if you could write a litte more on this subject?
I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little bit further. Cheers!
affordable car insurance in michigan recently posted..affordable car insurance in michiganMy Profile


car insurance companies in michigan July 24, 2013 at 2:57 PM

It’s amazing to pay a quick visit this site and reading the views of all mates about this piece of writing, while I am also keen of getting familiarity.
car insurance companies in michigan recently posted..car insurance companies in michiganMy Profile


codes for facebook credits August 5, 2013 at 4:45 PM

Having read this I believed it was extremely informative.
I appreciate you taking the time and effort to put this article together.
I once again find myself spending a significant amount of time both reading
and commenting. But so what, it was still worthwhile!
codes for facebook credits recently posted..codes for facebook creditsMy Profile


Darby August 8, 2013 at 2:33 PM

I like it whenever people come together and share views.
Great site, continue the good work!
Darby recently posted..DarbyMy Profile


chubbygirlwebcam.tumblr.com September 12, 2013 at 9:19 PM

Some posts make you smile, other posts leave you feeling sad,
this one made mme think, which is better than anything else.
chubbygirlwebcam.tumblr.com recently posted..chubbygirlwebcam.tumblr.comMy Profile


http://www.bookcrossing.com/ January 30, 2014 at 2:26 AM

Day 4: Eat your cabbage soup together with some bananas (maximum of 8 bananas throughout the day) and
skimmed milk. “I definitely want to lose weight and when i say lose weight, i mean now.
http://www.bookcrossing.com/ recently posted..http://www.bookcrossing.com/My Profile


import January 30, 2014 at 1:10 PM

I think this is one of the most significant info for me.

And i am satisfied studying your article. However wanna observation
on some general issues, The website style is wonderful, the articles is actually great : D.
Good process, cheers
import recently posted..importMy Profile


drainage engineer jobs kent March 12, 2014 at 6:51 AM

With a repairing service to your central heating you’ll be able to also take some care on your much
neglected bathroom. In business you occasionally have to create compromises to maintain a very low value for
good quality function.
drainage engineer jobs kent recently posted..drainage engineer jobs kentMy Profile


mobile games April 11, 2014 at 8:10 AM

It’s appropriate time to make some plans for the longer term and it is time to
be happy. I’ve learn this submit and if I could I desire to suggest you some fascinating things or
tips. Maybe you can write next articles relating to this article.
I want to read more things about it!
mobile games recently posted..mobile gamesMy Profile


diena.org.lv July 22, 2014 at 3:16 AM

youu are actually a good webmaster. The webb site loading speed is amazing.
It kind of feels that you’re dong any unique trick. Furthermore,
The contents are masterpiece. you have done a excedllent activity
iin this matter!
diena.org.lv recently posted..diena.org.lvMy Profile


Vonnie September 22, 2014 at 7:39 PM

Yes! Finally something about free targeted website.
Vonnie recently posted..VonnieMy Profile


Lela October 21, 2014 at 9:42 AM

Thank you for the good writeup. It in reality used to be a amusement account it.

Look complicated to more brought agreeable from you!

By the way, how could we communicate?
Lela recently posted..LelaMy Profile


game gave November 10, 2014 at 4:52 PM

Hi, i think that i noticed you visited my site so i got here to return the prefer?.I’m
trying to to find things to enhance my site!I
guess its ok to make use of a few of your ideas!!
game gave recently posted..game gaveMy Profile


credit monitoring services review February 14, 2015 at 10:15 PM

Thank you a bunch for sharing this with all people you actually recognize what
you are talking approximately! Bookmarked. Please also talk over with my website
=). We can have a hyperlink alternate arrangement between us
credit monitoring services review recently posted..credit monitoring services reviewMy Profile


credit unions March 6, 2015 at 7:17 PM

Hey very nice site!! Guyy .. Excellent .. Amazing ..
I’ll bookmark your web site aand take the feeds additionally?
I am satisfied to searcfh out a loot off useful info right here witfhin the publish, we need develop extra strategies on this regard, thank you ffor sharing.
. . . . .
credit unions recently posted..credit unionsMy Profile


Asep October 22, 2015 at 8:24 PM

I didn’t think I’d be back here after Drag Race early versions, but this is a great game, a good time keillr and a well put together application.I have only one suggestion, though. Purple monsters are random, sometimes I get a manageable number and sometimes they are downright frustrating. I would suggest the spawn rate adjusts with numbers already on screen. For example, if there are 4 already, half rate. 8, one quarter. This would likely kill/lessen the keillr spawns. Last game, I got 16 purples in a very short time. This is rare, agreed, but it can’t hurt to be a little more consistent.And may I add, I have no issues with graphics. As long as items are easily recognizable, it’s fine.


Russell Organics Maracuja Oil December 28, 2015 at 12:00 PM

Maracuja moisturizes the dry areas without making the oily spots feel greasy.
But, it is known that sun damage is one of the major causes of wrinkles,
roughness and other signs of aging. For example, in acne, the sebaceous glands produce excessive amounts of sebum.
Russell Organics Maracuja Oil recently posted..Russell Organics Maracuja OilMy Profile


Russell Organics Argan Oil May 20, 2016 at 10:39 AM

Thanks to my father who stated to me on the topic of
this web site, this website is genuinely amazing.
Russell Organics Argan Oil recently posted..Russell Organics Argan OilMy Profile


Alpha X Factor TST Review October 3, 2017 at 10:22 PM

I got what you mean, thank you for putting up. Woh I am thankful to find this website
through google.
Alpha X Factor TST Review recently posted..Alpha X Factor TST ReviewMy Profile


Cancel reply

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge

Previous post:

Next post:

Page 1 of 11