Ben Todd | Apr 16, 2017 | 3
How to Check Your Credit For Free Through Credit Cards
It is essential to know your FICO credit score as it shows how effective you are at managing credit and debt. When you are applying for a mortgage or vehicle loan, the loan issuer will look at your FICO credit score to determine if you will be approved for the loan.
Why? Well the higher your credit score the better the chances you will be approved for the loan or mortgage. Knowing your credit score allows you to know where you stand and what you need to do to improve your score.’
There are some legit ways you can check your credit score for free:
- Through various Credit ‘Trial’ Offers that you sign up for then cancel on the offer before the trial is up (not recommended)
- Through a completely free service like Credit Sesame , that lets you do credit checks for free (recommended)
- By requesting your legally entitled free yearly credit report from the three credit bureaus
- By having a specific credit card that allows you access to your credit score online
We are going to talk about #4 — credit cards that let you check your credit history. Not every card allows this, just specific cards from specific banks.
Before the cards that offer this service are explained, it is important to know the criteria that is used to determine your FICO score as shown below:
- payment history 35%
- amounts owed 30%
- length of credit history 5%
- new credit 10%
- types of credit 10%
Fortunately, many credit cards provide you with access to your FICO credit score allowing you to consistently monitor your credit score. This article will outline which credit cards allow you to check your FICO credit score for free, as well as how to check your credit score for free through your credit card.
To check your FICO score on the following credit cards you have to have an online account for your credit card. All you have to do is log onto your online credit card account to view your score.
Credit Cards with free access to FICO Credit Score
1. American Express Credit Cards
All American Express credit cards offer their users free access to their FICO credit scores. Some of the more popular American Express credit cards include the American Express Blue Cash Preferred and the American Express Starwood Preferred Credit Card.
To access your score all you have to do is log onto your American Express online credit card account and click on the Useful Links menu.
2. Capital One Credit Cards
Most Capital One credit cards such as the Capital One Venture One Travel Rewards Credit Card and the Capital One Quicksilver Cash Back Credit Card allow you access to your FICO credit score. These Capital one credit cards come with a feature called the Capital One Credit Tracker, which allows you access to your FICO credit score for free. Your credit score will be updated every month and you can even receive alerts that will be sent to you when there is a change to your credit score.
3. Chase Credit Cards
As of now, the only Chase credit card that offers free access to your credit score is the Chase Slate Credit Card. Your FICO score will be updated on a monthly basis and you can access the score at any time.
To access the FICO score, all you have to do is log in to your Chase Slate online account and click on the FICO Score button in the top right hand corner of the My Accounts page. Click on the one time consent button if it is the first time viewing your FICO score on your Chase account.
4. Citi Credit Cards
Citi now offers free access to FICO scores for all of their credit cards. Some of the more popular Citi credit cards include the Citi Double Cash Card, and the Citi Simplicity Card. The FICO scores will be based on the data provided by Equifax. The credit scores are updated on a monthly basis, and also provide reasons why your score is what it is, with tips on how to raise your score. The following information will be displayed:
- The FICO score with 2 key factors that are most impacting their score
- A FICO score meter to illustrate where the user falls in the credit score range
- an specific analysis on how you can improve your score
To check your FICO score simply head to citi.com/creditscore and log in to your credit card account.
5. Discover Credit Cards
Discover also offers free access to your FICO score online and on each monthly statement you receive. Some popular Discover cards are the Discover IT credit card, and the Discover IT miles credit card. Discover uses the score based on your TransUnion credit report.
The FICO scores will also contain key information regarding your credit score and is updated on a monthly basis. Also, you can access up to a year of your previous credit scores.
6. Bank of America Credit cards
Bank of America just recently added the feature allowing free access to your FICO score. This feature is available on all Bank Of America credit cards. The information will be based on your TransUnion credit report.
To access your score with your Bank of America Credit card, you have to opt in by logging into your online account and click on Activity Centre, then View My FICO Score.
7. Barclaycard US Credit Cards
Barclaycard US allows users to access their FICO score for free on their online accounts. This service is available on all of the Barclaycard US credit cards. Some of the more popular Barclaycard US credit cards are the Barclaycard US and the Barclaycard US Ring MasterCard.
In addition to offering your FICO score, Barclaycard US also shows the reasoning why your FICO score is what it is, along with a chart that plots your credit score in the last year. Furthermore, you can also sign up to receive email alerts when there has been a change to your credit score.
8. U.S. Bank Credit Cards
U.S. Bank offers their card users free access to their FICO scores.This service is available for all of the credit cards that they offer. Some of the more popular U.S. bank cards are the U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature card and the U.S. Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards Card.
Your FICO score will be updated on a monthly basis and is available by logging into your online account. Also, you will also get an explanation as to why your FICO score is what it is, as well as things that can be done to improve the score.
Free Credit Score Checking with Credit Cards vs Credit Karma / Sesame
With free services like Credit Sesame and Credit Karma, there is certainly no more need to PAY for your credit score, as was the habit a few years ago if you wanted to see how you stood, credit wise, right away.
But the difference is that the credit score shown by various credit card companies is the actual FICO score — the very same score your lenders will see. The free score shown by Credit Karma and Credit Sesame is not exactly the same (some things are left out of the score). For most people, it’s pretty close to the actual FICO score they have and is good enough though.
Still, if you get a credit card that offers a free credit score reporting as part of the card service, why not use it — it’s a win win.