Know Your Credit
Credit monitoring is a service that offers you notifications every time your credit report changes. All three credit-reporting bureaus offer this; Equifax has four, Transunion has two, and Experian has five credit monitoring products. In addition to those offered by the credit bureaus, there are independent businesses that have their own credit monitoring products. Many of these products are advertised on TV and over the internet but some may take a little research. Credit monitoring services generally cost between $10 and $25 a month.
Advantages of Credit Monitoring
The advantage of paying a fee for this service is the opportunity to review and monitor your credit reports more frequently than you would through a one-time, free annual report. Moreover, if anything negative happens that may affect your credit score, you will be notified immediately. You may also receive notifications if you open a new account or credit line or if you close an account. While you will have continually access to your credit score, you won’t have access to your FICO score, which is used by most lenders.
Should You Get the Service?
Applying for credit monitoring isn’t mandatory, but you should definitely consider the following if you want to get a subscription. If you are confident about your credit, then you shouldn’t worry about any problems on your report. Remember that each credit bureau offers a free report once each year, excluding your credit score. Know that when you order your credit report, it does not affect your score. If you check out your credit report often, especially if you’re concerned about the information present, you may need to sign up for a credit monitoring service. Purchasing additional copies cost around $10 to $15 so the cost of a credit monitoring service does not seem out of line. It can actually save you money and time in the long run.
Things to Consider
Some questions you may want to consider whether you’ve been turned down for lower interest rates when you purchase through credit, if you’ve had problems leasing or renting or if you have ever been turned down for credit? Being familiar with your credit report and knowing your score is essential in creating a good credit history for yourself. Monitoring your report is a good way to keep tabs on how you spend and how it’s affecting your score. If monitoring your reports seems to be difficult, a credit monitoring service can remove the burden but you also have to be careful not to purchase products or services that you do not need. Keep a vigilant eye on the different monitoring services out there and pick one that you trust.