Consumers are entitled to a free credit report every 12 months from each of the three major credit bureaus but that does not include credit scores.
While free credit scores are available at several web sites and more than 20 web sites offer credit scores for a cost, they are not your true scores unless they come from myfico.com.
Over 90% of U.S. lending decisions are made using FICO credit scores according to CEB TowerGroup, a financial services research firm, making it imperative consumers know their true credit scores.
MyFICO is the only place to get your FICO Score from each of the 3 credit bureaus. Until recently if you wanted your FICO score it came at a cost; unless you were denied credit or given less favorable terms in which case you are entitled to see the score that the lender used, at no charge.
But there is a new trend starting that allows consumers access to free FICO scores on a monthly basis.
FICO Begins to Make Available Free Credit Scores
Under FICO’s Score Open Access program, customers are able to see their credit scores as often as their lenders order them from FICO, which could be every month.
Customers can also see the top two factors impacting their score — things like late payments, a short credit history or high balances.
FICO’s Score Open Access program is an attempt to make it easier for consumers to know the exact score a lender uses to make credit decisions.
According to Anthony Sprauve, a spokesman for FICO, “…We are trying very hard to remove the mystery about the FICO score and the perception that the score is handed down from on high and educate people about their score so they understand the factors that drive the score.”
FICO credit scores, particularly the exact score that a customer’s lender is using, have typically been difficult for consumers to find. According to an American Banker Association Survey 56 percent of Americans have no idea about their credit scores.
One lender offering your credit score on a monthly basis is Barclaycard. You may not need another credit card but the benefit of having free access to your real credit score is worth it. Barclaycard provides FICO credit scores on cardholders’ statements. Learn more.