Your FICO score is one of the most important indicators of your financial status, and can have a dramatic impact on your life in many ways. Any time you apply for a lease, loan, apartment rental, credit card, or cell phone, your FICO credit score is used to determine how well you manage your finances and if you are a good applicant. Your score can also determine your terms and how much interest you will have to pay on any money you borrow. A better credit rating can save you tens of thousands of dollars over your lifetime. So, what is this exactly is this magic number and how can you get your free online FICO score?
A credit score is a risk-based system which allows banks and other companies to determine how well you manage your debt and other financial obligations. Based on your credit report and financial history, your score is a calculation of all your past financial activity. Your FICO score will fall somewhere in the range of 300 to 850, with anything over 700 being a great score, and anything under 600 being a liability. It is very important that you check your score at least once per year, as approximately 80% of credit reports contain errors and out-dated items, all of which can have a very negative impact on your credit rating.
So how do I get my free online FICO score? Luckily, for all Americans, you are legally entitled to receive your credit report and FICO credit rating for free, once per year. This is stated by both the Accurate Credit Transactions Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act. The easiest way to obtain your credit rating and report is to request it from one of the many websites that can easily be found online. These sites will often make their money by selling extra services along with free credit reports. Keep in mind that you do not need to purchase any additional services to obtain your free report and score.