A credit report is a must-have for buying a vehicle, a home, and any large purchases with a loan. Often you also have to have a credit score to rent an apartment, turn on utilities, get approved for a credit card, and sometimes even to get insurance or be hired.
Having a good credit score unlocks you and your children (if applicable) to many possibilities.
But what if you have a bad credit score? Not only can you be denied a place to rent, a cell phone, utilities, etc. but even if you do get approved for purchases on bad credit it can cost you thousands, even hundreds of thousands in interest throughout your life.
Your credit score is the most defining metric of your overall financial health. Thus, it is vital that you and your children know, understand, and have good or excellent credit.
Helping your child develop a great credit score early on is a huge financial gift you can give them before they embark into the credit-driven economy on their own. Karen and I go into detail about how and when to start working to help your child to build a credit score in our book, Living a Rich Life as a Stay-at-Home Mom.
So for now, we will focus on you.
Although you can legally receive a free credit report each year, they don’t include your actual credit score. You can find the reports only here. I thought most companies charge you to find your credit score…until I found out about Credit Karma™. They offer your score(s) and a detailed report for free.
At first, I thought it was too good to be true, but when/if you sign up you’ll see they WILL NOT ask you for your credit card information; it truly is FREE!
In addition to your scores, you can see any and all late payments, collections, how many loans you have out, which accounts you have open, which have been closed, etc. You can also see if something doesn’t look right (possible identity theft), and more.
Also, if you have a late payment or a collection that you do not recognize, many times you can get the contact information for the lender through Credit Karma™ as well. Further, your credit will not be negatively affected by checking your credit through Credit Karma even if you check daily.
So Challenge #15- is to read the information found on my blog post entitled, How to build an excellent credit score and ways to improve a bad one here and implement a few things you can work on to improve yours.
-Optional Task which I highly recommend- is to sign into Credit Karma™ here and check your credit score to make sure all of your information is right, find ways to improve and dispute or work on anything that is incorrect.
P.S. I’m NOT getting compensated by Credit Karma! It’s just such an awesome tool that I wanted to include information on it for you to benefit from.