Credit Karma launches Credit Builder, a free to open, interest free program that can help members with lower credit scores build credit while saving money
OAKLAND, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Credit Karma Money™, a single destination within Credit Karma for spending and saving1, today announced the launch of Credit Builder, a fee-free line of credit aimed at helping its more than 110 million members in the U.S. build credit and save money. At launch, Credit Builder will be primarily available to Credit Karma members in the U.S. with credit scores of 620 or below, who are new to credit or need help building their credit. This is the latest in a slew of products launched by Credit Karma Money which seeks to change consumers’ relationship with money and help them develop good financial behaviors, like staying on top of their bills and spending within their means.
Credit Karma Money members who use Credit Builder, which is powered by financial health platform SeedFi2, have an initial savings goal of $500 and then choose how much they wish to contribute toward their goal on a weekly, biweekly or monthly basis. Credit Builder holds the amount borrowed in a locked savings account, through SeedFi, while members make regular payments, establishing a history of on-time payments. Members can track their progress over time, including the number of payments made, amount saved and total score improvement, all within the Credit Karma app. Credit Builder is free and does not charge monthly fees or have an APR.
“Credit Karma Money is a product for everyone, but especially helps those with low credit scores or thin files who are otherwise boxed out of the financial system,” said Poulomi Damany, GM of Assets and Tax at Credit Karma. “Most consumers with lower credit scores don’t have the chance to prove to lenders that they can be a good borrower, making it more difficult to get approved for credit and making it more costly to borrow. That’s why we launched Credit Builder, in partnership with SeedFi. Together, we want to give these members a free, low-risk way to prove they can borrow responsibly, while helping them build their credit and save money.”
Behind the scenes, members who sign up for Credit Builder are opening a line of credit through SeedFi, which does not require a credit pull. Then, once a member opens the account, they select how much they wish to save each pay period. Every payment made by the member is then reported to the credit bureaus by SeedFi. This demonstrates positive borrowing behavior by showing a pattern of regular on time payments, which is one of the key factors in determining a person’s credit scores.
Once a member reaches their initial savings goal, they can choose to access that money or opt to keep saving. If, for some reason, a member is unable to continue making payments toward their account, they can stop the plan without any fees and withdraw money they were able to save during the period.
“Credit Karma Money is challenging the status quo by providing checking and savings accounts that are purpose-built for people who don’t have perfect credit and don’t always have extra money left over each month to save,” said Neil McCarthy, associate director of product management at Credit Karma. “We’ve taken that one step forward with Credit Builder. This product gives members a way to improve their credit and save money at the same time. That last part is huge when you consider nearly half of all Americans don’t have $400 saved to cover an unexpected emergency. Plus, members will be able to strengthen their savings muscle by regularly putting away money towards savings, all while working to improve their scores.”
Credit Karma is an independent third-party and is not a bank. The Credit Karma platform facilitates the opening and managing of Spend and Save accounts offered through our bank partner MVB Bank, Inc., Member FDIC.
About Credit Karma
Founded in 2007 by Ken Lin, Credit Karma, an Intuit company (Nasdaq: INTU), is a consumer technology company with more than 120 million members in the United States, U.K. and Canada, including almost half of all U.S. millennials. While best known for pioneering free credit scores, the company’s members turn to Credit Karma for everything related to their financial goals, including identity monitoring, applying for credit cards, shopping for loans (car, home and personal), auto insurance, savings accounts and now checking accounts through our bank partner, MVB Bank, Inc., Member FDIC — all for free. Learn more about how Credit Karma members are making financial progress on TikTok, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
About Credit Karma Money™
Credit Karma Money is a new money experience from Credit Karma, the personal finance platform more than 100 million Americans already trust. Credit Karma Money Save accounts are free, interest bearing savings accounts with no fees, no minimum to open and no catches. Newly launched, Credit Karma Money Spend accounts are checking accounts free of hidden fees. with features like up to two-day early access to paychecks and Instant Karma, which incentivizes good spending behavior by giving members a chance to win back their money when they spend cash they already have in their accounts. To open an account, visit CreditKarma.com/checking.
Started in 2019 by fintech veterans, SeedFi is on a mission to help people build credit, borrow money when they need it, and improve their financial future. Banking services and personal loans are provided by SeedFi’s banking partner, Cross River Bank, Member FDIC.
- Banking services for Credit Karma Money Spend and Save accounts are provided by MVB Bank, Inc, Member FDIC. Maximum balance and transfer limits apply per account, please see Terms and Disclosures per account for details. MVB Bank, Inc. is not affiliated with Cross River Bank, Member FDIC nor SeedFi.
- Banking services and line of credit for Credit Builder provided by Cross River Bank, Member FDIC.