Welcome to the third of a three-part series on credit scores. This article looks at how you can monitor your credit score. Part 1 focuses on credit score rankings. Part 2 delves into what influences credit scores.

What is a credit score?

Your credit score is a numerical rating of your credit worthiness. Basically, the higher your score, the more favorable creditors are likely to view your applications for new credit cards and mortgages and other loans.

How do I find out my credit score?

Many financial institutions will provide you with your credit score for free, typically updated every month. The easiest way to find out, is to log into your bank account online or check your banking app to see if your FICO score is available. Many banks will even alert you if your credit score changes for any reason.

You should pull a full credit report from one of the three major credit reporting bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Most people should look at their full credit report once or twice a year. If you’re working on repairing your credit, you can make sure your credit-building activities are represented on the reports by examining your credit report more regularly.

You also want to make sure your credit report is accurate. If you find an error, you should pull your credit report from the other two reporting bureaus to examine them as well. Make sure you dispute any error (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion).

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