Overview: Sites Like Credit Karma (Alternative Credit Sites to Use)
Knowing your credit score is vital to obtaining auto loans, mortgages, and even new credit card accounts.
How can you have access to your credit score without paying a monthly subscription fee?
Sites like Credit Karma promise to give you regular updates on your credit report and credit score using a variety of means to help you stay on top of your own finances. By staying up to date on your own credit history, you will better know where you have room for improvement.
Credit Karma could arguably be the most well-known company for obtaining this very personal information, but you can find a number of other sites like Credit Karma.
Websites like Credit Karma are plentiful, and we will help you find a Credit Karma alternative that can assist you in staying up to date on your own financial wellbeing.
What Is Credit Karma?
Before we can really begin to look at websites like Credit Karma, it’s important to understand exactly what service Credit Karma offers its subscribers. What attributes of Credit Karma should you look for when searching for a website like Credit Karma?
Here are a few of its major features that you will want to keep an eye out for when looking at other websites like Credit Karma.
Credit Karma offers free credit reports combined with insights that give you advice on areas of potential improvement. It may provide suggestions on how to improve your credit score through a variety of means, including offering personalized suggestions for purchasing additional products. Credit Karma also provides free credit monitoring to help protect you from identity theft.
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Free credit score sites like Credit Karma are able to provide you with free credit scores by offering additional recommendations for products that can help you based on your credit history.
Credit Karma (and sites like Credit Karma) stays in business by receiving payments from the bank or lenders who provide the services you sign up for based on those recommendations. If you prefer not to have credit sites like Credit Karma solicit your signup for these services or products, you may want to consider paying for a subscription service.
The biggest thing to keep in mind with Credit Karma and any other free credit score sites like Credit Karma is that they should never ask for your credit card information. If any website like Credit Karma requests your payment information before ever providing your credit score, you should be wary.
Oftentimes, sites like these automatically sign you up for enrollment to a paid subscription that offers your credit score on a regular basis.
What’s the Difference Between a Credit Score and Credit Report?
Be careful regarding sites that offer free credit reports instead of credit scores. While this information is useful to keep for your records, most lenders and creditors look at your credit score when determining your eligibility for particular offers.
Some sites sound like they might be a Credit Karma alternative, but it’s possible they will not provide exactly what you were looking for.
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A credit report, which some sites like Credit Karma provide, details your credit history. This would include your records from lenders and landlords, past billing from utility companies, cell phone bills, and any other bills that contribute to your credit history. There are three major credit-reporting agencies that can provide a snapshot of this information: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
A report will include any applications for credit cards; lines of credit you currently have open, including your balances; and any liens, judgments or bankruptcy documents filed under your name and Social Security number.
Checking your credit report each year is critical to make sure that your identity has not been stolen and to ensure that all information provided within is accurate.
Credit sites like Credit Karma provide your credit score. Free credit score sites like Credit Karma assign an actual numerical value to the information provided in the credit report. This number is derived from a mathematical formula calculated from your debt amounts, length of credit history, credit mix, and new credit.
Your credit report should always be free at least once per year through annualcreditreport.com, but your credit score may cost you unless you are using sites like Credit Karma.
What Type of Credit Score Do I Need?
In case you haven’t noticed, some sites like Credit Karma provide different types of credit scores than others. Which one is the best to monitor and pay close attention to? Free credit score sites like Credit Karma typically do not offer you your FICO score, the score most commonly utilized by lenders. They do, however, offer several different types of equivalency scores.
Different lenders will pull different credit scores, but FICO is the most commonly used. Many lenders will still use VantageScore or VantageScore 3.0, which is the type of credit score that most websites like Credit Karma will be able to offer you. So, what’s the difference between the two of them?
The major difference between the two types of credit scores is how they are calculated:
VantageScore or VantageScore 3.0:
- 32% payment history
- 23% credit utilization
- 15% credit balances
- 13% depth of credit
- 10% recent credit
- 7% available credit
- 35% payment history
- 30% amounts owed
- 15% length of credit history
- 10% new credit
- 10% types of credit in use
Both will look at very similar categories and still give you an accurate idea of where you should stand with lenders. No matter which of the sites like Credit Karma you choose to go with, they will most likely offer you the VantageScore or VantageScore 3.0 version of your credit score. Just keep in mind that lenders may reference your FICO score when applying for new lines of credit or loans.
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Finding a Site Like Credit Karma
Interested in finding a website similar to Credit Karma that can help you get a free copy of your credit score? To help give you some additional options, we’ve compiled a list of services and the basics about each of them to help you find plenty of Credit Karma-like sites.
These credit sites like Credit Karma will all receive compensation for your credit score based on the promotional offers and loans that you can apply for through their partnership with other lenders and companies. Websites like Credit Karma use these promotional offers as a way of placing well-qualified leads connecting to companies looking for new customers. As a tradeoff, you also only receive offers, tailored to the opinions of sites like Credit Karma, of what will actually improve your score.
Credit Sesame, a website similar to Credit Karma, provides you with a free copy of your national equivalency credit score once each month. Credit Karma does offer its credit score reporting on a more frequent basis (weekly), but receiving a monthly update on your credit score is great if you’re just looking for Credit Karma-like sites.
Credit Sesame also promises credit monitoring, a popular feature among websites like Credit Karma. You will receive your TransUnion credit report through Credit Sesame. Other versions of your credit report are easily accessible through other sites like Credit Karma. This is still one of the free credit score sites like Credit Karma, and you will never be asked to input your payment information.
Quizzle is another of the sites like Credit Karma and Credit Sesame that does not require you to enter a credit card in order to obtain your free credit score. Unfortunately, Quizzle will only provide you with a copy of your VantageScore credit score and your Equifax credit report every three months.
Unlike some other sites similar to Credit Karma, Quizzle also offers an upgrade package that will allow you to receive more frequent access to your scores. Quizzle Pro provides monthly reports and credit monitoring for $8 each month, and Quizzle Pro+ includes some additional identity theft services for $15 each month.
Credit.com, one of the websites like Credit Karma, will give you access to two different free credit scores each month: your Experian score and your VantageScore 3.0. You will never have to enter your credit card information into the platform, so there is no risk of auto-enrollment in a monthly subscription-based service.
You will also gain a copy of your credit report, as well as an analysis of how the information within can impact your score, and methods to improve it. Like most sites similar to Credit Karma, many of these methods are promotional links for which they will receive compensation.
Another site like Credit Karma is WalletHub. With this option, you can review your VantageScore and TransUnion credit report. WalletHub provides you with the opportunity to enter more personal details, like your debt level and income, to offer specific advice about your financial situation in combination with your credit score.
Instead of pushing specific products or services, such as other websites like Credit Karma, WalletHub displays advertisements from companies along the top of the screen in a menu bar. Unlike other sites similar to Credit Karma, WalletHub is not paid based off the number of new customers it can recruit for companies. These lenders or service providers pay WalletHub for the premium ad placement.
How Many Sites Should You Sign up for?
With so many sites like Credit Karma and Credit Sesame, how do you know which ones you should sign up for? If all of the websites like Credit Karma are mostly the same, does it make a difference which one you use?
Those are valid questions to consider, especially because you are putting sensitive and highly personal information into each additional website you find. Plenty of websites similar to Credit Karma are available, and it might not be a bad idea to consider signing up for all of them.
Investment website Investopedia recommends signing up for every website like Credit Karma to help you maintain a better overall picture of your credit report and your credit score. Since each of the other sites like Credit Karma provides a slightly different variation of your credit score or credit report, reviewing the information from all of them can be especially helpful.
Understanding your credit score is beneficial for knowing what loans or interest rates you might be eligible for. Not only that, but utilizing the information provided by sites like Credit Karma can help you to keep a closer eye on your credit history. Has someone applied for a new line of credit in your name? You’ll have a much faster response if you are already watching your credit reports and credit scores.
Understanding your credit score and credit history is crucial to prevent identity theft and to be able to know which loan programs you might be eligible for from your lender. Credit sites like Credit Karma and Credit Sesame can help you to stay on top of the valuable information contained within those reports. Whether you are searching for a Credit Karma alternative or just want to add a few more Credit Karma-like sites into your repertoire, the websites like Credit Karma listed in our overview will give you a great starting point.
If you can overlook the advertisements and product placement, websites similar to Credit Karma are an invaluable resource for keeping tabs on your financial wellbeing. Decide how often you want to check with credit sites like Credit Karma when you sign up, as some are only available during certain time periods. Websites similar to Credit Karma may not offer credit scores for free on a weekly basis as the original Credit Karma does.
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