Are you in need of a detailed credit report?
Most Americans don’t know their credit scores. Some aren’t even aware of their significance in their financial futures.
Your credit report gives you a detailed overview of your credit score and financial health. Obtaining your credit report can help you stay in the know and plan more effectively for the future.
There are many options when it comes to checking your credit score online. In this post, we compare the most popular credit report sites so that you can choose the best one for inspecting your scores.
Read on for more insight into the best credit report site!
What is a Credit Report?
Your credit score is a number assigned to you by a participating credit bureau. This number indicates your “creditworthiness.”
Creditworthiness signifies, in general, your ability to manage debt. As such, your credit score is based on your credit history, the timeliness of your bill payments, and your use of available credit.
There are a few other factors that influence your credit score, but these are the most important.
Scores are calculated on a scale of 300 to 850, although some credit bureaus may have slightly different minimum values. It is possible to achieve different scores through different bureaus, as some lenders or companies do not report to all three bureaus.
Understanding your credit score can help you plan for your financial future. A solid credit score is often required, for example, in applications for mortgages and auto loans.
While bad credit doesn’t preclude you from getting a loan, it can mean higher rates and harder terms.
Your credit report gives you your credit score and a detailed overview of what goes into that score. Savvy consumers can use their credit reports as tools for building more credit and making sound financial decisions.
It’s possible to request a credit report from a credit bureau. However, it may be easier to obtain credit reports through other online sources like Credit Karma, WalletHub, and Credit Sesame.
Read on for a review of these providers.
WalletHub: The Basics
WalletHub is an online provider of credit scores and credit reports. The WalletHub website also offers consumers extensive information they can use to maintain good financial health.
Individuals can compare credit cards, for example, learn more about loan options, and more on WalletHub’s website.
The WalletHub team also has a lot of experience when it comes to personal finance. The CEO and founder spent over eight years working for Capital One and has been in the industry for nearly two decades.
For this reason, WalletHub gives most consumers a free and comprehensive overview of the ins and outs of basic finance.
But what about their credit reports?
First of all, WalletHub enables all consumers to view a copy of their full (not partial) credit reports for free. In fact, all of the services on their website are free for users.
Users can also check their credit scores for free, without inspecting the details of their report itself. In addition to this, WalletHub offers consumers credit analysis and credit monitoring.
Consumers have the option of receiving SMS alerts from WalletHub, offering advice on credit management and improvement. They can also receive daily updates on their credit score and money-saving recommendations.
In this sense, WalletHub seems very committed to its users’ ability to receive information about their financial standing and analyze it in clear terms.
What’s more, users don’t have to enter credit card or bank account information to access this information. WalletHub uses 128 bit SSL encryption to keep users’ details safe and confidential.
To access a credit report, users simply have to set up a WalletHub account, which includes entering the last four digits of their Social Security Number. Users must answer a few more questions about household income in order to receive personalized recommendations on finance.
After this, users can view their reports, update changes in address, confirm credit modifications, and more through their dashboard.
Credit Sesame: The Basics
Credit Sesame is another personal finance company that offers consumers free credit scores and reports. According to its website, Credit Sesame is committed to giving consumers personal financial information for their credit and loans.
It has been in operation since 2010 as a financial management platform.
Credit Sesame also offers identity theft protection and savings recommendations. Like WalletHub, all of Credit Sesame’s services are free.
It is important to note, however, that Credit Sesame does not offer users a full credit report. Rather, they give consumers access to their credit scores and/or a credit report card.
Individuals have to upgrade to a premium account through Credit Sesame to get access to their full credit reports as provided by credit bureaus.
However, Credit Sesame’s credit report cards still give consumers a lot of valuable information about their credit score and history. Its score is, according to its website, designed to give users a glimpse of their financial health.
Report cards utilize information provided by TransUnion, one of the three government-provided credit bureaus. Each card presents an overview of your payment history, credit mix, credit age, credit utilization, and credit inquiries.
The difference between a Credit Sesame report card and a full credit report lies in the amount of information you receive. Full credit reports will offer users more details.
To gain access to their credit report card through Credit Sesame, users simply have to set up an account with this provider and answer some questions about income history. Credit Sesame users can also get assistance with choosing loans and credit cards and maximizing savings.
Viewing all of this information does not impact your credit in any way, as it constitutes a “soft” credit pull.
Credit Karma: The Basics
Credit Karma is another personal finance company that is designed to help consumers achieve “financial progress.” Over 75 million consumers are Credit Karma members.
The company launched in 2007. Since then, it has developed a commitment to giving users free access to their financial information.
Like the other two credit report sites on this list, Credit Karma’s services are 100% free to all users. Credit Karma enables members to view their credit scores, full credit reports, and more simply by setting up an account.
When it comes to credit reports, Credit Karma pulls reports from two bureaus, TransUnion and Equifax. The company will highlight aspects of your reports that are important for you to review.
In addition to extensive credit report analysis (and access), users also get insight into loan and credit card offers. Advisors can also help members manage high-interest rates on current loans and find ways to save more money.
Credit Karma claims that this is how it makes money–whenever a user chooses an advertised loan offer, they profit as an affiliate.
However, consumers don’t have to pay a penny to use this service.
Credit Karma members have access to their credit scores and reports 24/7. The service also provides credit monitoring, keeping users in the loop whenever scores change.
The company is also very clear about the security it offers members. You can feel safe entrusting your personal information to Credit Karma, given the fact that they rely on high-level encryption for all data transmission.
Lastly, Credit Karma can also be a resource for people needing information on taxes and insurance premiums, including auto insurance.
The Comparison: Best Credit Report Site
WalletHub, Credit Sesame, and Credit Karma are all viable resources for people needing clear and detailed access to their credit reports. While consumers could benefit from using any of these three sites, there are a few differences worth highlighting.
For example, Credit Sesame does not offer members full credit reports. Members can only receive full reports if they upgrade to a Premium account.
WalletHub and Credit Karma offer members free and full credit reports, however. If you are looking for a comprehensive overview of your credit, obtaining a full credit report is essential.
Both WalletHub and Credit Karma function as more than mere providers of credit information. They are also platforms designed to give users the information they need to navigate their credit and personal finances the right way.
In this sense, these two credit report sites are more competitive, because users can rely on them for assistance in other financial aspects. Because your credit is an integral component of your entire financial health, we would recommend either of these platforms as tools for longterm monetary growth.
However, if you don’t want to get lost in the dense details of your full credit report, Credit Sesame’s credit report card can be helpful. This card can give a quick snapshot of financial health, highlighting the essentials a consumer needs to know to move forward.
So, at the end of the day, which is the best credit report site?
Every consumer is different, and ultimately, the best credit report site will be the one that suits your preferences.
However, given the fact that it pulls full credit reports from two credit bureaus and offers entirely free services, Credit Karma tops the list. WalletHub takes a close second, with Credit Sesame at the rear.
At Bonsai Finance, we are committed to your personal finance success. If you are ready to discover the credit options available to you, reach out today!