Two years ago, around the time when I had left my full time office job to work online, my credit score was in the tank. I wasn’t making enough money to support myself and my massive debt load and as a result, I was late on almost every payment I made. And if that wasn’t bad enough, I regularly wrote checks I knew I didn’t have the funds to cover and finagled my way through collections and $225,000 in debt.
By the grace of God and a few key people in life, I’ve worked my way out of this debt monster, to where my current debt amount is just south $190,000. $35,000 is quite a high amount to pay off in two years and hopefully the next two will be just as kind. Already, I’ve noticed a great increase in my credit score and according to Credit Karma and their Transrisk score, I’m officially at 604!
You might be thinking that a credit score of 604 is nothing to brag about but you would be wrong. When I opened my Credit Karma account in late 2009, my credit score was an abysmal 431. I didn’t think a credit score could be so low, but when you’re fighting off a few collections and have an on-time payment history of less than 50%, that’s going to happen. I have more than 25 active accounts right now and my credit score has improved 170 points in 24 months because everything, and I mean everything has been on-time. With a little more time and a little more effort, I’m confident I can have my credit score at 700 by August of 2012.
In checking my credit score, I noticed a new neat feature of Credit Karma and it’s that the credit score can be updated at any time, with no restrictions. The credit score that Credit Karma provides is not a FICO score, rather a credit score from TransUnion, one of the three major credit bureaus. Even though I don’t have a view of my credit report through Credit Karma, I do see a report card, that accurately breaks down my profile.
I never thought I would be happy with a D, but progress is progress. Credit Karma is free, easy to use and rather than always having to sign up for free trials and cancel them, this is a perfect tool to utilize in following the progress of your credit. I highly recommend signing up for an account on Credit Karma and habitually checking your credit.
Published or updated March 5, 2013.