If you want a service that offers you notifications every time your credit report changes, then credit monitoring is definitely what you need. This is offered by all three credit reporting bureaus, which is a good plus in maintaining good spending habits. Equifax has four, Transunion has two, and Experian has five credit monitoring products. Other than them, you can tap into independent businesses to offer their own credit monitoring products. You’ve probably searched them over the net or seen some of the ads on TV.
Credit monitoring services cost generally around $10 and $23 a month with most of these services offering ID theft insurance or compensation guarantee if your identity is wrongly used.
The advantage of paying a fee is that you get to check out your credit reports more frequently than you would through a one-time, free annual report. Moreover, if anything negative happens that may affect your report, you will be notified. Other than that, you may receive notifications if you open a new account or perhaps a credit line. Unlike that one-time annual report, you can access your credit score. You won’t have access to your FICO score, which is used by most lenders, though.
Should You Get the Service?
Applying for credit monitoring isn’t mandatory, but you should definitely consider these facts 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.
- Each credit bureau offers a free report each year, excluding your credit score.
- 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.
Ask yourself before you want to know about your credit report.
- Have you been turned down for lower interest rates when you purchase through credit?
- Did you have problems leasing or renting?
- Were you ever turned down for credit?
You have a good credit record if you answered ‘no’ to all the questions.
Knowing your credit report and your score is definitely nothing wrong. It’s actually a good way to keep tabs on how you spend and how it’s affecting your score. If you are aware about when you might need credit monitoring, you can save yourself the problem of getting pitched by other companies who offer you monitoring products.
Keep a vigilant eye on the different monitoring services out there. You should pick one that you trust, especially ones from the credit bureau so you won’t have to worry about added expenses, or in worst case scenarios, scams. If you have a clear understanding of your spending habits through the reports, you can definitely adjust to optimize how you spend.
By accessing comparison sites on credit monitoring services, you can really find out what would work for you best.