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I've seen the commercials for freecreditreport.com, but commercials with singing pirates make me uneasy; maybe they'll steal all my booty (personal information).

What are the different ways to check my credit score? How will checking affect the score?

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    Related: money.stackexchange.com/questions/359/… – Chris W. Rea Aug 10 '10 at 1:49
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    Also note: getting your credit score is not the same as getting your credit report. One attempts to summarize the other into a number. – Chris W. Rea Aug 10 '10 at 1:50
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    BTW: The pirates of FreeCreditReport.Com are just Experian masquerading as someone else. Also, it isn't free unless you sign up for a credit monitoring service. – JohnFx Aug 10 '10 at 2:48
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http://annualcreditreport.com/

That's the official site for getting your free yearly credit report (one free per year from each of the 3 reporting bureaus).

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    Technically, that's a yearly credit report, not a credit score. If you want to know your score (which actually can vary depending on who's estimating it), your best bet is to ask your bank. Also see this official government site. – Stephen Cleary Aug 10 '10 at 13:03
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Assuming you are asking about a credit score in the United States, the following applies.

To find out your FICO score, navigate to AnnualCreditReport, the official site to help consumers receive their credit report from each of the three organizations providing these scores - Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. You are - in many states - entitled to a free copy of your credit report from each of these organizations annually.

This copy of your credit report will not contain your credit score from that organization. It will, however, contain information that goes into your credit score - the lines of credits on file, any delinquencies reported, etc.

If you decide you would like to pay for your credit score from each bureau, you will have the option to receive this information while getting your credit report, but you will have to pay a nominal fee for it. Remember that each of the 3 bureaus gives you a different score. Averaging your 3 scores should give you a good idea of your FICO score. Note that your report is far more important than your score - once you know that, you know if you're in a good place or not.

These other questions are so close that they might even be considered duplicates, and provide other suggestions for how to check your score.

As a warning, don't trust the many ads out there saying you can get your score for free. Only AnnualCreditReport is considered a safe place for entering the very personal information required to get a score. The FTC backs this up.

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Since no one else answered this part of your question yet:

Checking your own credit score or report will not affect it in any way.

It only hurts you when someone looks it up to run a credit check at your request for the purpose of possibly getting a loan, for example a car dealership. This only hurts it a tiny bit, and is not worth worrying about unless you are going to 20 different car dealerships who each do a check. However, it is a good idea not to let them run your credit until you are seriously ready to buy a car. In fact, it is better to just get financing somewhere else and not let them run it at all.

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  1. Different states have different laws, check your local laws concerning credit. Some states even guarantee you to get one free credit report per year.

  2. If you recently apply for an apartment, a mortgage or denied a credit card or loan, you can usually get a free copy from whomever you authorized to pull your credit report.

  3. Sign up credit monitoring service, there are quite a few of these. Most credit card companies offer such service, Amex, Chase, Citibank, etc. It' costs around $10-$20 per month.

  4. If you sign up a service and pull your own credit report, it's considered a "soft" pull which won't affect your score negatively.

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Check with your bank.

As of January, 2015, the following banks and credit unions are offering free credit-scores:

  • Barclaycard US
  • First Bankcard (the credit card business of First National Bank of Omaha)
  • Citibank (C),
  • Discover (DFS),
  • Digital Credit Union,
  • the Pentagon Federal Credit Union, and
  • North Carolina's State Employees' Credit Union

Announced, in the pipeline:

  • JPMorgan Chase (JPM)
  • Bank of America

Source: Banks to offer FICO credit scores for free


Personal Experience: I've been receiving free FICO score from my credit union for more than 6 months now.

Advice: Most people have multiple bank/credit-union accounts. The FICO score will be the same whoever offers it. If none of your financial institutions offer you a free credit-score then you may opt for free services like creditkarma.com or other paid services. Please note that a credit-score is number summarizing your credit-report and should not be confused.


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