With the old cliche "you get what you pay for,” you might be inclined to question the value of free credit score tools. But this is where common thinking gets turned on its head. Tools like SavvyMoney that are often included with membership to a credit union or bank can help you out big time, giving you access to more information and actionable tips than you might expect. The best part? Many of them integrate with your online and mobile banking platforms, at no cost to you. Here are a few ways that free credit score tools can be more helpful than you think.
Find Out What's Impacting Your Credit Score
Some of the easiest-to-access information can give you the biggest insight into factors impacting your credit score. There are the obvious factors, like on-time payment history, but other lesser known considerations could be hurting your score. Free tools like SavvyMoney with RMCU let you know if things like your debt-to-limit ratio, length of time you’ve had a line of credit, or other aspects might be impacting your score. Once you know, you’re better equipped to make changes to help improve it.
Credit Score Simulators Are a Test Drive of Financial Decisions
Free credit score simulators let you try out big financial decisions before you make them, seeing how things like buying a new car or skipping a payment will affect your score (spoiler alert: it’s never a good idea to skip a payment, unless you’re using a service like RMCU’s Skip-A-Pay). But free services like this can give you an idea of how a new loan or a higher credit limit will impact your score, often for the better.
Know What You Qualify For, Automatically
Tools like SavvyMoney are integrated directly into your online banking platform, giving you easy access to all the information you need straight from your account. They also help you plan ahead for life’s big purchases, with built-in access to let you know what you qualify for. From home and auto loans to credit cards, you can scope out potential rates and limits before you apply. Plus, some apps even recommend offers that could be helpful to you and your credit score. This gives you more information to consider as you move forward with picking out your new car or shopping around for credit cards.
Monitoring Adds an Extra Line of Defense
Built-in credit monitoring acts like an extra wall and moat between you and identity theft. With hackers and thieves out there looking for ways to steal, checking in yearly or quarterly with a free credit report might not be enough. You can keep an eye on real-time changes to your credit score with free services that allow you to update your score daily, allowing you to check for dips that may be a result of fraud. The more often you check in, the quicker you’ll be able to react if something does go wrong.
Strategizing Repayment Gives You a Financial Boost
Tools like SavvyMoney can give you tips on what loans or credit cards you can pay off to achieve better credit scores or achieve certain rates. This helps you to be strategic about what you pay off, and when, to maximize your credit score. The more information you have, the better you can manage your finances for your future.
If you already have a loan, credit card or savings or checking account at RMCU, gaining access to SavvyMoney is as easy as opting in while using your online or mobile banking platform. If you’re not a member, consider becoming one and taking advantage of the free perks RMCU has to offer. Get in touch to speak with a local financial expert today.
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