Free Business Credit Score Services
- Get a summary of your Dun & Bradstreet, Experian and Equifax business credit report
- Receive business credit grades for each score, plus your personal Experian credit score
- Tools to help you build business credit
What’s missing: You don’t receive your full business credit reports and scores with the free version. But you can upgrade to a paid version, starting at $29.99 per month for Nav Business Manager, to receive your full report and score with Dun & Bradstreet, Experian and Equifax, plus the ability to dispute errors on business credit reports and more. Compare Nav business credit products. There are alternative paid options to view your actual score, which we break down below.
Free Credit Score Resources
Most credit card issuers provide free credit score access to their cardholders making it easier than ever to check and know your score.
Some issuers, such as Citi and Discover, provide free FICO Scores, while others, such as Chase and Capital One, provide free VantageScores.
You can check your credit score in less than five minutes by logging into your credit card issuer’s site or a free credit score service and navigating to the credit score section. There will typically be a dashboard listing your score and the factors that influence it.
FICO and VantageScore will pull your credit score from one of the three major credit bureaus, Experian, Equifax or TransUnion.
Here are some free credit score resources that you can access, whether you’re a cardholder or not:
How Often Should You Check Your Free Credit Scores
Checking your free credit scores on Credit Karma isnt a one-time set-it-and-forget-it task. Your scores may be updated frequently as your changes, so checking them regularly can help you keep track of important changes in your credit profile.
Since you can check your free credit scores without hurting your credit, feel free to check as often as you like. If you see your credit scores steadily growing, it can help motivate you on your credit-building journey. And when youre ready to submit a credit application, getting a better idea of your overall credit health beforehand can give you a better sense of where you stand.
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How Business Credit Is Used
When you apply for future business credit, potential creditors and lenders will view the report to determine your companys creditworthiness. They will use the information to evaluate how well your business repays its debts, and negative marks can cause you not to get approved, or lower the amount of credit they will extend, or limit the terms under which that credit will be given.
Besides lenders and creditors, several other parties may be interested in reviewing a business credit report. Business insurance companies, for example, assess a businesss report as part of the underwriting process. Customers and other businesses that are being considered for a joint venture or partnership may also review your companys credit history before working with your business.
How To Check Your Credit Score For Free Without Penalty
It’s a myth that checking your own credit score will affect it.
Any time you apply for a loan, or even some bank accounts, the resulting credit check can hurt your overall . But the myth that checking your credit rate or report does the same is just that: a myth.
To better understand how the process works, its important to know the difference between a soft and hard inquiry.
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Use Credit Monitoring To Track Your Progress
are an easy way to see how your credit score changes over time. These services, many of which are free, monitor for changes in your credit report, such as a paid-off account or a new account that youve opened. They typically also give you access to at least one of your credit scores from Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion, which are updated monthly.
Many of the best credit monitoring services can also help you prevent identity theft and fraud. For example, if you get an alert that a new credit card account that you dont remember opening has been reported to your credit file, you can contact the credit card company to report suspected fraud.
Wallethub: Best For Credit Alerts
WalletHub provides you with credit reports from TransUnion and the TransUnion VantageScore. To register, you’ll need to provide your personal details and the last four digits of your Social Security number , and you’ll have to answer a few questions to verify your identity. The site also asks other questions, such as your annual income, monthly expenses, and credit card debt to complete the registration.
The dashboard shows all of your credit accounts and balances while the credit alert section gives you a report card-style letter grade on the factors that influence your score. For example, the site warns you if your debt load is too high relative to your income or if your is too high and hurting your score.
Drop-down menus provide additional details, such as your credit utilization ratio. An easy-to-read version of your credit report shows all of your current and closed accounts, and any negative items, like collection accounts.
A menu bar across the top of the page provides information about financial products and services, such as checking accounts and car loans. WalletHub earns money from some of these companies, which advertise and pay for premium placements on the site.
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Request Your Free Medical History Report
You have the right to get one free copy of your medical history report, also known as your MIB consumer file, each year. You can request a copy for:
- Someone else, as a legal guardian
- Someone else, as an agent under power of attorney
You can request a medical history report online from MIB or by phone at 1-866-692-6901.
Not everyone has a medical history report. Even if you currently have an insurance plan, you won’t have a report if:
- You haven’t applied for insurance within the last seven years
- Your insurance policy is through a group or employer policy
- The insurance company isnt a member of MIB
- You didnt give an insurer permission to submit your medical reports to MIB
Who Can See And Use Your Credit Report
Those allowed to see your credit report include:
- banks, credit unions and other financial institutions
- offer you a promotion
- offer you a credit increase
A lender or other organization may ask to check your credit or pull your report”. When they do so, they are asking to access your credit report at the credit bureau. This results in an inquiry in your credit report.
Lenders may be concerned if there are too many credit checks, or inquiries in your credit report.
It can seem like you’re:
- urgently seeking credit
- trying to live beyond your means
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Check Your Reports Carefully For Errors
Look on your credit reports for any debts or credit cards you dont recognize. Also check for disputed items that still show up even though they were resolved in your favor. A late or missed payment isnt an error if it actually happened.
- Use our to review each report.
- If you find any errors on your reports, file a dispute to get them corrected as soon as possible. Learn how.
Why You Should Check Your Credit Score
Its always good to brush up on the benefits of checking your credit score. And in short, checking your credit is important because it:
- Gives you a good sense of your financial fitness, providing a numerical grade for the contents of your credit reports
- Helps you get the best possible credit card and loan terms, and reduces the likelihood of rejection
- Makes comparing financial products easier, as most offers list a minimum level of credit needed to qualify and
- Tells you how closely you need to review your credit reports. A score that is much lower than youd expect is an obvious red flag, perhaps indicating potential fraud.
- Has no effect on your credit score. Checking your credit score creates a soft inquiry, which does not impact your credit score, so you can check your score as often as you want.
Finally, its important to remember that virtually everyone has room for credit-score improvement. And a better credit score could be worth thousands of dollars per year. Plus, tending to your score doesnt have to cost you a dime or much time. So check out our handy to get started. And if youd like advice tailored to your specific situation, sign up for a free WalletHub account to get your personalized credit analysis. Thats just another reason why you should check your credit score on WalletHub.
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Why Is My Credit Report Important
Businesses look at your credit report when you apply for:
- loans from a bank
If you apply for one of these, the business wants to know if you pay your bills. The business also wants to know if you owe money to someone else. The business uses the information in your credit report to decide whether to give you a loan, a credit card, a job, or insurance.
Regularly Monitor Your Credit Health
Its important to regularly monitor your credit health based on the information found in your report. Catching and fixing inconsistencies or mistakes on your credit report early can save you from being blindsided by a sudden dip in your credit score and help you spot opportunities for improvement.
You can monitor your credit health yourself by taking advantage of free credit reports and credit score access. Many experts say you can save money and take control of your finances at the same time by self-monitoring using your free credit report. If you make a habit of combing through your report regularly, looking for potential errors or areas of opportunity, you dont need to pay for the service.
But there are also a variety of credit monitoring services that can help you. These services typically offer perks like frequent access to your credit score, notifications when changes are detected, and suggestions for ways to improve your credit score.
The disadvantage is cost. Credit monitoring services offered by the major credit bureaus range from $19.95 to $24.99 a month, and if youre trying to build your credit, spending more money may not be in your best interest.
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How To Check Your Business Credit Score
While there are dozens of free credit score and free credit report resources available for consumers, it gets tricky when you look for business versions. There are select free business credit score resources available, but you may not get the full picture compared to a service that requires you to pay.
To make things easier for busy business owners, we’ve rounded up the popular free credit report resources and summarized what they offer. We’ve also included some of the other services that cost money but can be worth the money if you’re looking for a comprehensive view of your business’s financial standing.
Practice Good Credit Habits
Remember: Your credit score is never set in stone. Even if you have a good credit score, make sure to continue practicing good credit habits like always paying off your balance on time and in full and keeping a low .
If you have no credit history or bad credit history, checking your credit report and score is the first step to improving your credit. You need to have a full picture of where you stand now in order to understand what you should be doing differently and spot opportunities for improvement.
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Best For Single Bureau Access: Credit Sesame
In addition to your TransUnion credit report information, youll also have access to your TransUnion credit score online or through the Credit Sesame mobile app. Reviewing your information often gives you an idea of where your credit stands and whether you need to improve your score. Credit Sesame analyzes your credit information to make recommendations for credit cards, loans, and other financial products, but you dont have to apply if youre not on the market for a new loan.
Avoid New Credit Card Purchases
New purchases will raise your a ratio of your credit card balances to their respective credit limits that makes up 30% of your credit score. You can calculate it by dividing what you owe by your credit limit. The higher your balances are, the higher your is, and the more your credit score may be negatively affected.
Under the FICO score model, it’s best to keep your credit utilization rate below 30%. That is, you should maintain a balance of no more than $3,000 on a credit card with a limit of $10,000. To meet that 30% target, pay cash for purchases instead of putting them on your credit card to minimize the impact on your credit utilization rate. Even better, avoid the purchase completely.
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Why Should I Get A Copy Of My Report
Getting your credit report can help protect your credit history from mistakes, errors, or signs of identity theft.
Check to be sure the information is accurate, complete, and up-to-date. Consider doing this at least once a year. Be sure to check before you apply for credit, a loan, insurance, or a job. If you find mistakes on your credit report, contact the credit bureaus and the business that supplied the information to get the mistakes removed from your report.
Check to help spot identity theft. Mistakes on your credit report might be a sign of identity theft. Once identity thieves steal your personal information information like, your name, date of birth, address, credit card or bank account, Social Security, or medical insurance account numbers they can drain your bank account, run up charges on your credit cards, get new credit cards in your name, open a phone, cable, or other utility account in your name, steal your tax refund, use your health insurance to get medical care, or pretend to be you if they are arrested.
Identity theft can damage your credit with unpaid bills and past due accounts. If you think someone might be misusing your personal information, go to IdentityTheft.gov to report it and get a personalized recovery plan.
You Went Through A Bankruptcy Foreclosure Or Repossession
Things like bankruptcy, foreclosure, and vehicle repossession can negatively affect your credit score for 7-10 years. Most of these will impact your credit for seven years. But if you file Chapter 7 bankruptcy, it will stay on your report for 10 years. These negative events can be hard to overcome, so do all you can to avoid them. These items canât be removed from your credit report if theyâre an accurate part of your credit history. They can really drag your credit score down, but their effect on your score will decrease over time. Thatâs because older negative items on your credit history have less of an effect on your credit score than newer items.
You can help improve your score by proactively rebuilding your credit. Do this by repaying loans on time and paying off credit cards and medical debt.
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Consider Consolidating Your Debts
If you have a number of outstanding debts, it could be to your advantage to take out a debt consolidation loan from a bank or credit union and pay them all off. Then you’ll just have one payment to deal with and, if you’re able to get a lower interest rate on the loan, you’ll be in a position to pay down your debt faster. That can improve your credit utilization ratio and, in turn, your credit score.
A similar tactic is to consolidate multiple credit card balances by paying them off with a balance transfer credit card. Such cards often have a promotional period during which they charge 0% interest on your balance. But beware of balance transfer fees, which can cost you 35% of the amount of your transfer.
What Does A Credit Score Mean
Your credit score is a numerical representation of your credit report that represents your creditworthiness. Scores can also be referred to as credit ratings, and sometimes as a FICO® Credit Score, created by Fair Isaac Corporation, and typically range from 300 to 850.
FICO® Scores are comprised of five components that have associated weights:
- Payment history: 35%
- Length of credit history: 15%
- How many types of credit in use: 10%
- Account inquiries: 10%
Lenders use your credit score to evaluate your credit risk generally, the higher your credit score, the lower your risk may be to the lender. To learn more, view how your credit score is calculated.
Did you know? Wells Fargo offers eligible customers free access to their FICO® Credit Score plus tools, tips, and much more. Learn how to access your FICO Credit Score.
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Select Reviews Common Questions Surrounding Business Credit Scores And Reports So You Can Familiarize Yourself With Your Business’s Credit Standing
Selects editorial team works independently to review financial products and write articles we think our readers will find useful. We may receive a commission when you click on links for products from our affiliate partners.
While you may think are reserved for individuals, businesses also receive that ever important number.
Similar to personal credit scores, business credit scores play a part in how lenders judge your business’s eligibility for credit products, such as loans and . If you’re a small business owner applying for credit, it’s important to understand what makes up your business credit score and how you can access your business credit report.
Below, Select reviews common questions surrounding business credit scores and credit reports, so you can familiarize yourself with your company’s credit standing.