Credit Karma Services
Credit Karma’s claim to fame is free credit scores, but that is not the only thing they provide. In addition to free credit scores, Credit Karma offers free credit reports and free credit monitoring as well as quick tips for credit health. Plus, if you download their app, you’ll be able to dispute any errors you may see on your TransUnion report without even leaving Credit Karma.
Another service they have is the option to take out credit cards and loans through them. If you don’t see an offer you like, there are no obligations to move forward with them. You’ll be shown different offers for various types of loans such as home, auto, and student. Credit card suggestions will show up, too, when viewing your report, or you can simply search their site for a type of card that may suit you best.
Lastly, Credit Karma gives users the option to utilize their tax services. While they cover the common forms, they very clearly note on their website that they are unable to do everything with taxes yet.
How It Works
When you sign up for Credit Karma, you will receive email updates updating you on your credit score. Along with these updates, you will be shown any recommendations for your debt or improving your score in what is called your dashboard area. With no credit card or bank account required on file, Credit Karma maintains its free-to-use status.
To calculate your credit score, Credit Karma uses VantageScore 3.0. The scores you want to actually aim for will come from what is known as a FICO scoring system, which is commonly used by lenders to review your credit history and is viewed as an accurate system. However, VantageScore is often referred to as a “FAKO”Â score, an obvious play on words to indicate the fact that the system is not as accurate as FICO.
Credit Karma Complaints
Users often have concerns with the lack of accuracy involved with their score. This tends to be the problem for free online credit reporting systems that use VantageScore and similar. This seems to be the biggest Credit Karma complaint from users, as apparent on their Better Business Bureau listing, but other issues have developed over time.
A post about the San Francisco-based company on Consumer Affairs from June 29Â by Philip of Coopersburg, PA gave a satisfaction rating of one star and mentioned that after using their tax services, Credit Karma never actually turned in their tax forms, despite receiving a confirmation.Whitney of Odenton, MD had the same issue, and Credit Karma claimed she never filed with them even though she could log in and see her filing history.
Luis of Brattleboro, VT wrote on Consumer Affairs thatÂ Credit Karma fails to let users know that if they are denied for the credit cards advertised on the site, it actually brings their credit down. What angered him the most was the fact that Credit Karma has the cards listed as recommended, but they apparently do not take your own credit history into account.
So, keep in mind…
Although Credit Karma does offer free credit reporting services, one has to keep in mind that they likely are not accurate. However, it may still be useful in gaining an idea of where you stand as well as get tips on how to improve your financial health. It may be wise, though, to steer clear of certain amenities they offer like filing for a loan or credit card or even using their tax services.
Have you ever used Credit Karma? What are your thoughts?Â
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