I’ve long been a huge fan of credit monitoring – and now I’m strongly recommending it even more.
For years, I’ve written about the benefits of monitoring your credit: it helps you boost your credit score, spot identity theft, learn proper credit management and more.
And now there’s another powerful reason to start monitoring your credit: you can do it absolutely free. And, yes, I mean truly free.
CreditSesame.com, a credit education and loan website, is offering consumers free credit monitoring through an agreement with Experian, the nation’s largest credit bureau.
For nearly three years, Credit Sesame has already given people free credit scores, based on the information contained in their Experian credit reports. Credit Sesame also provides you with free aggregated information about the data found in your Experian credit report – like how much student loans or credit card debt you have, or how many times you’ve recently applied for credit.
Now Credit Sesame is going one step further, allowing you to get notifications about changes and updates in your Experian file – and to do so on a regular basis at no cost.
So if one of your goals in 2013 and beyond is to improve your credit rating, trust me: you will do yourself a favor by signing up immediately for this free credit monitoring service from Credit Sesame.
As a user of Credit Sesame’s service you’ll be alerted anything something important in your Experian credit file changes: like an inquiry or a new application for credit; a new account in your name gets opened; a reported change of address; a big increase (or decrease) in a credit card balance; or a late payment or any negative reporting by one of your creditors.
All told, Credit Sesame’s free credit monitoring service will let you know anytime more than 40 different changes to your credit report occur.
“I believe it’s the most comprehensive credit monitoring on the market,” Credit Sesame founder and CEO Adrian Nazari told AskTheMoneyCoach.com.
Credit Sesame currently has more than 1.5 million users.
Credit Sesame users have the option of receiving credit monitoring alerts via their Credit Sesame account, email, text, or the company’s iPhone and Android mobile apps.
And here are a few added bonuses of this free credit monitoring, compared to other quasi “free” offers or paid services: you don’t have to give up any credit card information; you don’t need to sign up for any “free” trial period; and if you don’t want it for some reason in the future, simply opt out and you’re done. No frustrating phone calls, letters or waiting to get a refund back on your credit card.
Even though other financial experts disagree with me, I honestly believe that credit monitoring is so valuable that it’s worth paying for the service.
But I’m also no fool.
If you can get the same service at no cost and with no “catches” — which is exactly what Credit Sesame is offering — that’s definitely a better deal than shelling out money month after month for credit monitoring.
And when you consider the cost savings, that’s a few hundred dollars every year. After all, most paid credit monitoring services run between roughly $10 and $20 a month.
By the way, for skeptics wondering how Credit Sesame is able to offer free credit monitoring even though other companies charge for this, the answer is simple: Credit Sesame is fronting the money for this service.
“Instead of consumers paying for it, we pay for it,” Nazari explained. “We’re paying Experian a wholesale price for the credit monitoring, but we are not passing that cost along to the consumer.”
On a personal note, I have used Credit Sesame in the past and loved the company’s free services and credit education tools. I have also paid various companies for credit monitoring for at least eight years; constantly reviewing my credit reports is one of the reasons I have excellent credit.
However, just this month (December 2012), I cancelled all the paid credit monitoring services I had. That included myfico.com (creators of the FICO credit score), ZenDough.com (a division of TransUnion) and another credit monitoring offering direct from Experian.
I didn’t cancel because these services lacked value. On the contrary, they served their purpose. I canceled mainly as part of a massive cost-cutting effort my husband and I undertook in 2012.
We challenged ourselves to see how much money we could save and the results were phenomenal. I’ll share more about that in another article.
But for now, you can bet I’ll continue to monitor my credit in 2013 and in the years to come – except now, I’ll be doing it free of charge thanks to CreditSesame.com and its new agreement with Experian.