The Credit Info Library

What is a credit score?

A credit score summarizes each piece of your credit report data and calculates it into one number. Many assumptions can be made based on a credit score, including how likely you are to repay a home mortgage, auto loan or even if you make credit payments on time. A higher credit score means you more likely to get the credit that you're applying for. Often times a high credit score opens the door for better terms and rates.

How is a credit score determined?

A credit score number is calculated by using an equation that pinpoints various data points from all three credit reporting agencies which are called "score factors". Next, a comparison of this new information is made to other patterns found in thousands of past credit reports. This data is now used to show your credit risk level.

Here's a list of the most common score factors that impact your overall credit score.

  • Your credit inquiries
  • Your credit delinquencies
  • When you open new lines of credit
  • When your average balance of revolving credit is considered too high
  • A notable shortage of mortgage accounts

Why is my credit score even used?

Your credit score is an invaluable tool used by companies of every kind. From finance companies, employers and even insurance companies, relying on a credit score is a universal way to determine the creditworthiness or risk level you provide.

Companies use a credit score to help make quick credit decisions. This is a recognized "snapshot" of credit worthiness. Many creditors may also access a full credit report. Companies use this full report when they want to review a greater set of information to determine the level of credit risk.

Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian (three credit reporting agencies) offer industry-specific credit scores. Topic-specific industries use specialized reports for better understanding of any industry-specific information when reviewing credit. As an example, car industry lenders might use a credit score model to more accurately review and evaluate the history of your car or truck loan payments.

Industry-specific scores are based only on the records of an agency, it is very possible to differ from one agency to the next. This means credit score ratings can be different, depending on who is requesting it (renters, auto, mortgage, etc.).

Is there a way for me to see my own credit report?

You sure can! You are entitled by federal law to access your credit report once every 12 months for free. A fast and easy way to check your credit report is to visit Once you log in you'll be able to view your credit report from all three credit reporting agencies.

Keep in mind that the yearly credit report is not the same as credit monitoring. In order to monitor your credit from all 3 agencies, you will want to sign up for credit monitoring services that allow you to view your own personal report whenever you choose. monitors all 3 bureaus, so if anything suspicious arises, you will receive an alert in the portal.

How often do credit reports get updated?

Credit reporting agencies update every 30 days. But, what varies is the day of the month that creditors submit their information. Because there is no standard day of the month that creditors update the bureaus, it is possible that the agencies receive updates from one creditor on the fourth and from a different creditor the fourteenth. This is why it's a good idea for you to regularly access to your credit.

How to define credit monitoring?

Credit monitoring is a 24/7 service that continuously monitors your credit for any updates. As a member, you can rest assured that if any changes like new inquiries, missed payments, or any new accounts ever appear on your credit report you will be notified in our customer portal.

Credit inquiry, what is it?

When any type of company submits a request for additional information to better understand your creditworthiness, a credit inquiry occurs. Many companies use the elements found in your credit report to help their decision of how much credit they are willing to issue to you.

The most common types of credit inquiries are home loans, auto loans, or new apartments. Keep in mind that companies cannot make inquiries without your permission.

What are the benefits of a membership?

First, your membership comes with unlimited access to all your credit reports and scores. Next you get credit alerts, a credit report consultation and 24-hour credit monitoring. Finally, you get unlimited access to our credit education library and many other exclusive benefits.

How can I view my credit reports, scores & alerts?

Right after you enroll you'll be automatically linked to our member dashboard where your credit reports and scores are available. Easily navigate between benefits by using the tabs at the top of the page.

It's important to review your credit alerts regularly. To view your credit alerts simply click the "3-Credit Alerts" tab on the member dashboard. Then, click on that tab that is displaying the alert.

What do I do if I receive a credit alert?

The steps you take will depend on the alert. For example, you receive an alert for a new inquiry on your report. You should first consider if you've recently applied for credit, the alert is easily explained by that application. But if the inquiry was not due to an action you made, step #1 is to call the company listed on the inquiry. Staying up-to-date with your alerts and taking the steps to address them right away is very important.