Wondering how often a credit score will normally change? You're not alone. Because Credit Karma offers free updated credit scores and reports every week, many Credit Karma members expect to see their score constantly changing. However, this won't necessarily be the case.
Credit scores can change once a week for some and not at all for months (or even longer) for others. It usually takes specific changes to your credit information for your score to move, and once these changes occur, it could take some time for your credit report to reflect your new status.
Due to this fact, you may want to consider tracking your credit score over longer periods of time. While the fact that your credit score hasn't moved in a few months might seem concerning, it will likely seem less so in the context of a sixty-point improvement over an entire year.
Credit scores can change once a week for some and not at all for months for others. [Tweet this]
Short Term Vs. Long Term Changes
How your credit score reacts when you open a new account is a great example of how scores can change in the short term versus the long term.
When you open a new line of credit, a few immediate changes are usually made to your credit report. Most instantly, a new hard inquiry will probably be added to your report, and your average age of credit history could drop. Due to these factors, opening a new account is likely to drop your credit score in the short term. However, as you begin to diligently pay off your bills, the additional on-time payments, the higher number of total accounts and your now-growing age of credit history will likely outweigh the initial downsides, and your score can benefit in the long term.
If you've made prior credit mistakes and are working on repairing your credit, you may experience an initial bout of frustration as you loyally pay your bills off and rack up on-time payments only to see little or no change in your score. When in this situation, keep your long-term credit health in mind. While you might not see instant benefits with each paid-off bill, it's likely that you'll reap the benefits of your efforts in the long run.
How often should I check my score?
Since it might take months or years to see substantial growth, it's natural to wonder how often you should check your score.
While any short-term changes should be taken with a grain of salt, it's still wise to check your credit on a weekly or monthly basis. Regularly check your credit score and report to make sure no large changes have occurred that you're unaware of, to ensure the security and accuracy of your financial information and to keep an eye out for long-term trends. And if your score drops a few points, you may want to wait a few weeks before you jump to any conclusions. Keep making good moves and your score could bounce back before you know it.
About the Author: Mike Goldstein is a Content Writer at Credit Karma. Since joining the team in June 2013, he's been delivering the financial know-how on the daily. When away from work, you can find Mike watching hockey, Twittering for hours and frequenting trivia nights.
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