What Are the Benefits of Credit Monitoring?
If you’re looking forward to buying a new car or house or renting your first apartment, you’ll need credit monitoring services to take a closer look at your credit score. While many people don’t have a firm grasp of these numbers, these scores can be a determining factor in where they go next in life.
Credit monitoring means being aware of your credit reports and ensuring that the reported information is accurate. With credit monitoring services, consumers can easily identify errors and correct them to improve their credit scores.
Aside from this, the right services can help ensure that there has been no fraudulent activity occurring within their account, like someone using a credit card that doesn’t belong to them.
In this article, we’ll discuss the benefits of credit monitoring and why it’s important to use a reputable service to keep an eye on your credit.
Benefits of Credit Monitoring
When it comes to getting the terms you want on a loan, you’ll need to take a close look at your credit score. Here are a few reasons why you should vigilantly monitor your credit.
Optimizing Your Credit Score
The most significant factor lenders look at to determine the likelihood you’ll pay back loans is your credit score. The higher your credit score, the more likely lenders will trust you’ll repay the loan on time.
This also increases the chances of you receiving a lower interest rate and the exact type of loan you’re looking for. Your monthly payments are also bound to be lower, which means you’ll pay less interest over the life of the loan if your credit score is high.
For example, when you apply for a credit card or a mortgage, your credit score will be the most significant factor to determine how much you pay each month.
Credit monitoring services can help ensure that there are no errors on your credit report that could pull your score down. Keeping your score high means that you can get the best rates available.
It can be challenging to manually request and analyze your credit reports on your own. To make this process easier, you can use services like SmartCredit to stay on top of your figures. This can prevent your credit score from falling to unwanted levels.
What Credit Monitoring Services Can Do: Unfortunately, millions of Americans fall victim to credit card fraud each year, and many have errors on at least one of their three credit reports, according to the Insurance Information Institute.
These may occur through no fault of your own, but they will bog down your credit score. Ultimately, that will have an effect on just how much you pay when you take out a loan.
Credit monitoring will help you keep an eye out for errors on your reports or fraudulent activity. This is a proactive step that empowers you to act before any serious damage can be done.
While fraud can negatively impact your credit score, there are also plenty of other factors that can do the same.
These factors include skipping payments, which increases the amount you owe. Adding credit inquiries like when shopping for mortgages or applying for a new credit card can also affect your score.
What Credit Monitoring Services Can Do: Credit monitoring services like SmartCredit can help you manage your online accounts by tracking and updating your account balances and everyday transactions. You’ll get a deeper understanding of your spending habits and also receive alerts for when payments are due so that you can avoid any fees.
Saving Money and Time
Planning your finances will help you save money in the long run, but we’re all only human. There may be undetected issues or data entry errors that occur in the background that may affect your score.
If an inaccuracy isn’t detected before you apply for a loan or mortgage, you may not receive the terms you’re hoping for.
What Credit Monitoring Services Can Do: Not all credit monitoring services are created equal. You’ll want features that are actional, easy to understand, and all in one place. SmartCredit, for instance, offers the following:
- Transaction Monitoring
- Action buttons to dispute identity theft, negotiate debts, resolve reporting problems, and more
- Tools like ScoreMaster, which help you get your best credit score, faster
- Breakdowns of the factors that impact your score
The right credit monitoring service will have features that let you not only save money and time but give you a host of other benefits too. SmartCredit offers $1 Million in Whole Family Identity Theft Insurance, while also helping you track and update your bank and credit transactions.
Getting the Most Out of Credit Monitoring
Once you’ve decided to use a credit monitoring service, follow these tips to make the most out of your experience:
Check your notifications regularly. Checking your notifications ensures that you stay on top of the small things affecting your credit score. Not to mention, seeing improvements to your reports and scores can be rewarding, especially if you’ve been working hard to pay off your debt!
To streamline this, you can customize your notifications so you won’t get bogged down with irrelevant information. You can focus on what you’re specifically looking for and filter out items that are less important.
Act When Needed
If you notice any suspicious activity on your credit reports, act as soon as possible. Inaccuracies or potential fraud can be detrimental to your credit score even if it isn’t your fault. If you notice anything odd, make sure to work with the creditor to address issues if necessary.
The SmartCredit Action button allows you to communicate directly with creditors and banks to report any fraud or inaccuracies. The regular process of disputing an item on your credit report can be time-consuming and frustrating when having to write to the credit bureaus and explain the situation.
While the credit bureaus are bound by law to respond within 30 days, you may get an unfavorable answer, which means you’ll have to continue the line of communication until the problem is resolved.
The Action button allows you to bypass credit bureaus and deal with the problem head-on, saving time, and raising your concerns directly with the source, faster. The sooner you act, the less likely your credit score will be negatively impacted. If you wait until the fraudulent activity has already brought your credit score down, it can be more difficult to dispute charges. You’ll end up spending more time trying to fix your credit than if you had reported the problem immediately.
Credit Monitoring for You
When it comes to finding the best credit monitoring service for your needs, it’s best to think about what you’re looking for. While free services may sound like the most tempting option, you may be missing out on features that provide you with opportunities that may help increase your credit score.
Consider what you’d need in a credit score monitoring service and what your goals are. If you’re looking to increase your score, you may want to look for a more robust service.
For a robust and affordable solution, turn to SmartCredit. ScoreTracker can help you see all of your different types of credit scores and how they’ve changed from month to month. By seeing different scores, you can get an in-depth look at the types of scores you have and where you stand.
If you have negative items on your credit report, ScoreBuilder offers you a 120-day plan to help build a better credit score, while ScoreMaster helps you quickly get your best credit score and then keep it as you spend.
To learn more about monitoring your credit and getting your best credit score, visit SmartCredit today.