Updated December 22, 2018

Credit Sesame Review: Is It Good?

Credit score keeping you up at night? Credit Sesame helps monitor your report to keep those finances in order. Learn how to create financial goals and avoid unexpected surprises.

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Credit Sesame offers free credit reports and free credit monitoring from one credit bureau - TransUnion.

The credit score provided by Credit Sesame isn't the one that most lenders use. But it gives you a good idea of where you stand. Use it to track your credit score's progress.

Is it moving up or down? Always keep tabs on your credit history to see what current creditors report about your financial habits.

FYI: If you want all three credit reports or you prefer daily credit score monitoring, you'll need to pay a fee.

How It Works

You can sign up for the free Credit Sesame account by providing your name, address, email address, and Social Security number.

Credit Sesame doesn't ask for credit card information up front. You can choose to keep the free account or upgrade to a membership account down the road.

Is Credit Sesame Safe?
Credit Sesame has many safety measures in place to protect your personal and financial information. Use caution when sharing information online, though.

Credit Sesame does have the security approval from Norton and McAfee and they use multiple layers of security. Again, always use your best judgment when providing your personal information.

The free "basic" account provides you with:

  • Your monthly TransUnion VantageScore
  • Free credit monitoring with access to your credit report
  • Free alerts if anything on your TransUnion credit score changes
  • Identity theft insurance up to $50,000 (more on this below)

You can also upgrade your account to get more features. Credit Sesame offers three membership tiers, each with a higher monthly fee:

  • Advanced Credit: This plan includes one daily credit score update; three credit score updates monthly; three full credit reports monthly.

  • Pro Credit: This plan includes everything that the Advanced Credit plan includes PLUS credit monitoring from all 3 credit bureaus with alerts.

    You'll also get 24/7 access to live experts to assist with inaccurate information on your credit report.

  • Platinum Protection: This plan includes everything that the Pro Credit plan includes PLUS 24/7 live expert help if your wallet is lost or stolen.

    You'll also get dark web, public records, and Social Security number monitoring.

Taking a Closer Look at the Credit Sesame App

The Credit Sesame app is available on iOS and Android devices. It provides you with access to the same information you can obtain online on your PC.

You don't have to use the app and there aren't any special benefits you receive from using it.

The app itself can be helpful if you like to receive alerts or are the type of person who takes care of their personal and financial information on-the-go.

Contacting Credit Sesame
You won't find a phone number to contact Credit Sesame customer service. Instead, you can complete their online "Submit a Request" form or use their online chat tool once you register for an account.

Reasons We Like Credit Sesame

  • You can use Credit Sesame for free.
    If your main goal is to keep track of your credit score's progress and get basic credit monitoring, you can do so at no charge.

    If you are worried about identify theft or want lost/stolen wallet protection, the highest monthly plan will provide you with the most benefits.

  • You can check your credit score daily or monthly.
    After your initial signup and free credit report, you have access to monthly credit scores, or even daily if you find constant tracking necessary.

    If you have credit score issues or are trying to obtain a higher credit score, the constant monitoring can help you stay on track.

  • You can receive alerts on any new activity that takes place on your credit report.
    Even the basic Credit Sesame account provides alerts when new activity occurs in your name. This can give you a heads-up should your information be hacked or stolen.

  • You can get free identity theft protection.

    Even the Basic (free) membership includes $50,000 in identity theft insurance. The coverage varies based on occurrence.

    TIP: Make sure to read the fine print to determine exactly what would be covered, if anything, in your situation.

  • You can get free tips on how to improve your credit score.
    Credit Sesame will provide tips and action steps you can take to help your score improve. Some of the tips include referrals for other credit cards or loans.

    They may also refer you to third-party services that may help you get out of debt faster.

  • You can get a better handle on your total debt.
    Credit Sesame provides your total debt owed on your dashboard. This can be eye-opening and helpful all at the same time.

    Knowing what you are dealing with may motivate you to make larger steps to help yourself get out of debt.

  • You can get help choosing the right credit card to help your financial situation.
    Once you enter your personal information, Credit Sesame provides recommendations based on what you might qualify for or what will help your financial situation the most.

  • Credit Sesame offers a large amount of education on their website.
    The Credit Sesame blog contains helpful information about credit scores, credit cards, and tips on how to improve your credit. You can also use their FAQ section to get more helpful information.

  • You can access your information on your phone.
    If you do most of your banking and/or personal financial business on your phone, Credit Sesame will fit right in with your habits.

How Accurate Is Credit Sesame?
Credit Sesame pulls the TransUnion VantageScore 3.0. This may not be the same score a bank or lender will pull.

This means you may find some discrepancies in the score. They may use a different credit scoring model or different credit bureau.

The score you receive from Credit Sesame is accurate for the credit bureau and credit scoring model they use. Using it as an "estimate" of your credit score and how you should proceed may be the best use for this program.

Reasons You May Want to Look Elsewhere

  • You'll have to pay for all three reports..
    Credit Sesame advertises itself as a "free credit monitoring service." That's only the case if you want information from one credit bureau.

    Any further information can cost you as much as $19.95 per month for membership.

  • You'll receive a lot of targeted ads and emails after signing up
    Credit Sesame makes money off the ads and offers users take based on their advertising. You may get inundated with offers while using the program as well as in your email.

    How Often Does Credit Sesame Update?
    If you opt for the Basic plan, you'll receive monthly updates on your credit score and credit report. But sign up for any of the paid memberships to receive daily score updates from one to three bureaus, depending on the chosen plan.

  • You'll have to provide personal identifying information including your Social Security number.
    You should always use caution when providing your information to any service, Credit Sesame included.

How It Compares

Credit Karma: Though both services are similar, Credit Karma offers information from two credit bureaus in their Basic plan. Credit Sesame offers information from one.

But Credit Karma doesn't offer identity theft insurance. They also don't offer tips on how to improve your credit score.

Credit Wise: Offered by Capital One, Credit Wise is free for anyone to use, even if you aren't a Capital One customer.

Credit Wise offers many of the features of Credit Sesame's highest membership plan, but at no cost.

FYI: Credit Wise updates your information weekly rather than monthly.

Bottom Line

There's something to be said about keeping track of your credit history. At the very least, use a free credit monitoring service so that you receive alerts should someone steal your information.

If you've already been a victim of identity theft, paying for one of Credit Sesame's higher membership plans may help you even further.

More from CreditDonkey:

Average Credit Score

Credit Score Statistics

How to Improve Credit Score

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