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Published: Monday, November 04, 2019 @ 10:00 AM
If you’ve taken money expert Clark Howard’s advice and signed up with Credit Karma to monitor your credit, maybe you’ve seen the auto insurance score that they provide in addition to credit score information.
So what is an auto insurance score? We went directly to Credit Karma to get some answers…
Finding your auto insurance score on Credit Karma isn’t necessarily easy. Here’s how to do it:
If you click on that, you can see how your score may have changed over time.
As you can see, Credit Karma gets your auto insurance score from the credit bureau TransUnion. According to TransUnion, insurance scores typically range from 200 to 997, with anything above 770 being considered a good score.
Credit scores, on the other hand, generally range from 300 to 850. What constitutes a good credit score is up for debate, but our credit expert says that anything above a 760 will generally qualify you for the best rates.
Other credit bureaus like Equifax and Experian also calculate insurance scores based on your credit files.
A spokesperson from Credit Karma told us that auto insurance scores are calculated using information from a credit report, and can include:
The age of your credit history
The number of accounts you have in good standing
How many payments you’ve made on time
How much of your available credit you’re using
They added that auto insurance companies will have different standards for what they consider a “good” and “excellent” score.
According to Credit Karma’s representative, “Responsible activity can increase your insurance scores. Making all of your credit card payments on time, keeping your credit utilization down and having numerous accounts in good standing can help your scores. You may also want to keep your oldest accounts open to show a long-established track record.”
On the other hand, doing the opposite of any of those things will lower your insurance scores. You should avoid making payments after the due date and allowing accounts to go to collections. You also want to avoid a high credit utilization ratio. Too many recent applications for new credit may hurt your scores, as well.
Although you might not have been aware that auto insurance scores even existed, you should know that they can impact your financial life. Having a score that’s too low could mean that you’re paying too much for car insurance, even if your driving record is spotless.
Since auto insurance scores are so closely tied to your credit record and credit score, the fact that they exist should be extra incentive for you to make sure your credit is in as good a shape as possible.