Review of Credit Karma – Potential Resource

Finding a resource that provides helpful and valuable information for saving or managing money can be an enormous benefit.
This resource has tons of potentially helpful parts that can help you save or budget money better.

Review the following 9 parts within this resource including:

Free Credit Score

Debt Repayment Tool

Tax Preparation

Full Credit Report

Auto Insurance

Loan Advice

Credit Card Analysis

CK App Explained

Process for Starting an Account

In addition to these parts, Credit Karma offers tons of potentially helpful information and tips for saving or managing money better.

Through this review, which will focus on the Review of Credit Karma, I will provide helpful information about this resource and whether it is worth your time.

About Credit Karma

Credit Karma was founded in 2007 and is a multinational personal finance company. All of its services are free to use.

This company makes money through key advertising and by getting people referred to these advertisements.

This company provides credit scores and credit reports by connecting with Equifax and TransUnion, two of the most nationally recognized credit bureaus.

There mission is to provide people with the tools, education and opportunities to feel confident about their finances.

They provide a video to help explain some process for how their services are free as well as explain how they make money when you make a purchase of a credit card.

Free Credit Score

One of the key benefits of this resource is its ability to give a free credit score consistently.

You can check your score without having to get a hard check on your credit score. A hard check can hurt your score so it is almost always a good idea not to have a hard check done.

Once you have created an account with Credit Karma, you will be able to log in and see what your score is for the 2 main credit bureaus, Equifax and TransUnion.

These 2 will sometimes have different scores because each one will take into account slightly different features for determining your credit score.

I personally have 1 Hard Inquiry through TransUnion and 2 Hard Inquires through Equifax because one took into account my application for a credit card at Target and the other did not.

Other than this one detail, my scores for both bureaus appears to look very similar. Once every 7 days, you get an updated score.  You can see if your score went up, stayed the same or went down and what caused any changes.

Use Debt Repayment Calculator

Debt Repayment Tool

The debt repayment tool is a calculator that can show you how long it will take to pay off a debt accounting for its interest rate.

An example of this tool includes the following:

  • $2,000 debt
  • 10% interest rate
  • You would like to pay it off in 6 months

Expected monthly payments would = $343.

It would inform you that in order to pay it off in 6 months you would have to make monthly payments of $343.

The calculator was slightly confusing at times because if you put in that you want to pay it off in 6 months, then it would give you the expected payoff time as 7 months.

It is doing this because it is rounding up from 6 months to 7 because by 7 months you are likely to have the debt 100% paid off and at 6 months you might be 95% paid off.

It does provide a pie chart to show what the principal is and what the interest will be for this debt.

$2,342/12 = 6.83 Months to Pay Off Debt With a 10% interest rate

For this example, it shows that the principal comes out to be $2,342 and that there it will take $343 each month to pay this amount off.

The main amount did not quite add up and was kind of confusing again. If you take the expected principal amount of this debt, $2,342 and divide it by $343, then you get 6.83.

This means that if you paid $343 every month, that it would take 6.83 months to pay off the debt completely.

This tool has great potential but it gives off slightly confusing numbers at first glance. The calculator does clearly say that the expected payoff date will be 7 months from now, which is true.

This is still a good way of thinking about paying off debt because it is getting people less focused on a specific date to have the date paid off.

Realistically, life will get in the way some and slow down the process of paying off a debt in one way or another.

Being more focused on consistently paying off the debt by paying a specific amount each month is going to give you the best results.

This kind of resource can provide key information for paying off a debt and how long it will realistically take to accomplish this.

This resource was helpful but could use some slight adjustments in order for it not to be as misleading.

100 dollar bill savings
Save Money Through Tax Preparation

Tax Preparation

This company offers tax preparation information too and even will file for you free.

They have received a 4.8/5 stars ratings through 764,928 reviews on their Credit Karma Tax Survey.

It offers the following services for its tax preparation plan:

  • 100% Free for Everyone
  • 100% Accurate
  • Free Audit Defense
  • Get Maximum Refund

It has a whole menu section that explains how accurate they will be and they even have a free audit defense too.

They make it clear that if Credit Karma makes a mistake and there are financial penalties in the calculations for your taxes, that you will be compensated for that mistake.

They further explain that you can get up to $1,000 in the form of a gift card if there is a mistake made by Credit Karma and you get penalized.

It is a little unclear what specific gift cards are possible and for some people this might not be the same as money compensation.

If you have a simple straight forward tax preparation and filing status, then this could be a potentially easy way to save money on your taxes.

If you have a significantly changed situation for this tax year compared to previous years, then opting to get more information through their website is the likely the best course of action.

Full Credit Report

A credit report can be a very helpful tool to show what your payment history is and how reliable you are at paying off debts.

This kind of information about you can help you get approved for a student loan, credit card, car loan or mortgage.

A credit report that is in good standing with a high credit score can have much more impact in your life than you might think.

Knowing how to understand the factors that affect your score can be critical for raising this score and Credit Karma will do this for you. It will also teach you the basics of what makes up a credit report and what tools you can use to change your score.

Checking your credit report consistently will help you spot potential errors and get them corrected quickly. They provide another video here to illustrate how the process of making payments can have a significant effect your scores.

This video shows how each payment will go to the Lender and then that information will be sent to the bureau so that they can provide an updated credit report for you to see.

This report tends to give very detailed information about all the many credit factors involved in your score. If there any noticeable changes to your account, then you will be sent an alert or email to inform of this change.

This can be good for identifying fraud but also nice for when you have made a big jump up in your scores for each credit bureau.

Red Car in Nature
Auto Insurance Through Credit Karma

Auto Insurance

Another area where this resource can be helpful is from their auto insurance section.

The auto insurance information is broken down to give you quick and useful prices for your insurance options.

The auto insurance section asks you to provide the following information:

  • What Your ZipCode Is
  • HomeOwner or Not
  • Currently Insured or Not
  • Your Age

After you provide this information, you will be given the 5 auto insurance companies that would give you the best price and comprehensive protection plan. All of these individual factors can each have a big effect on what kind of prices you will be offered by auto insurers.

You can get a free quote for each of these auto insurers to see what they will charge you.

You will be required to enter some basic information for each quote, including the following:

  1. Your Full name
  2. Mailing Address
  3. Vehicles on Plan
  4. Number of Drivers
  5. Final Details

To get an accurate quote, these auto insurance companies will take into account your driving and claims histories. This quote should be free and it never hurts to look at your options.

Credit Karma will quickly give you details about each auto insurance company and what the benefits are for each company.

Each car company will have 3-4 bullet points describing the big advantages of using each company. These bullet points give the key information about what each company offers and which one could be best for you.

Loan Advice

Loan advice and information is given its own section here and each loan is full of potentially useful tips.

You can get loan advice for any of the main loans including:

  • Personal
  • Home
  • Auto

These are the main loans and for each there is information given to help provide quick and helpful details on how to get set up in a good loan.


For personal loans you must give your credit score and the specific loan amount in order to determine what options are available for you.

After you provide this information, then you will be able to see how many options and how good each option is for you.

Each personal, home and auto loan will have the loan amount and 3 quick points including:

  1. Monthly Payment
  2. Estimated APR
  3. Interest and Fees

If your personal loan amount was $2,500 and you had a good credit score between 700-749, then you could be given loans with 8% estimated APR, $318 interest and fees and a $78 monthly payment for 36 months.

You can click on See details, rates and fees for each specific loan which can tell you about any other details connected with each loan and who is giving out this loan.



Home loan options are broken down into purchase or refinance.

There are 4 factors for a purchase home loan search including:

  • Credit Score
  • Zip Code
  • Purchase price
  • Down Payment

Each of these factors can affect your rate from lenders. If you want to add more details to your search, then you can click Enhance Your Search on the left side of the screen.

Doing this will allow you to enter in more specific information such as the following:

  1. Your Income
  2. Porperty Type
  3. What the property will be used for
  4. Loan Programs

This home loan option is designed to give out quick and helpful rates that you can get. You can see how many people considered each lender for each loan every week.

The monthly payment amounts and APRs shown do not include taxes and insurance for each loan.


Each auto loan will show you details about what loans are available depending on a few factors.

These factors include the following:

  • Loan Amount
  • Auto Type
  • What Your Credit Score Is
  • Length of Time to Pay Off Loan

Each potential loan will show 3-4 bullet points describing the main benefits such as no prepayment fees or apply online and get a decision in minutes.

You can click on See Details section to see the main features of each loan such as no application fees.

Using Credit Karma’s loan information can give you helpful tips about any of these loans and prepare you to make that decision with more confidence.

3 Credit Cards
Credit Card Analysis for Best Cards

Credit Card Analysis

Credit Karma conducts research into the main credit cards available and gives you the right information to choose which one is best for you.

They will give you key information for any of the following credit score details:

  1. Bad Credit
  2. Good Credit
  3. Excellent Credit
  4. Best Cash Back Credit Cards
  5. Best Overall Credit Cards
  6. Best Travel Credit Cards

Understanding which card is best for you can become a regular task because each year, or sooner, your credit score can change significantly.

Credit Karma does key research into which card is best if you have bad credit and what kind of card you qualify for.

If you travel a lot, then picking a credit card that is good for getting money back for those purchases can be an easy way to get money back into your bank account.

Generally for this to be worth it you should be spending over $1,000 on traveling a year to get a significant enough amount of money back.

If you are a student and looking to find the right card for you, then you could choose the Deserve Edu MasterCard which offers a bunch of benefits.

Some of these benefits include 1% cash on all purchases, $0 annual fee and complimentary amazon student prime.

This section of Credit Karma could be beneficial if you are looking for a new credit card or want to learn more about what cards are out there.

CK App Explained

The CK app is a simple to use tool that can help you easily stay in touch with your score and where it is headed. I use the app twice a week to see where I have improved and what I can do to increase my score.

It can be downloaded easily and once it is downloaded it is easy to use.

You can set up your app account so that it only requires a 4 digit pin to get into the account. Doing it this way can make it easy to have access to your account if you want to quickly check where you credit score currently is located.

I find that I use the app version much more because it is very easy to quickly see all the important information for my account.

You can see any of the following credit factors for your account:

  • Payment History
  • Credit Card Utilization
  • Derogatory Marks
  • Age of Credit History
  • Total Accounts
  • Hard Inquires

You can check out your credit history whether you want to see 3 months, 6 months or 1 year ago statistics of what your credit score was for that time.

The app tells you how significant each credit factor is by breaking down each one into the following categories:

  1. High Impact
  2. Medium Impact
  3. Low Impact

For instance, payments history, credit card utilization and derogatory marks are all high impact factors which means that these factors will likely significantly affect your score.

Age of credit history is a medium impact factor and total accounts and hard inquires are low impact factors.

The Process for Starting an Account with Credit Karma

Using a Credit Karma account will be free and there is very little risk with signing up with this resource.

One detail is that getting your address recognized could run into problems especially if you have an unusual living situation. I had some trouble getting my account started because my address was somehow not recognized for some time.

Eventually it was accepted but it took some extra reapplying before getting approved. Once I was approved, it was easy to stay connected to the account.

You can see for yourself if this resource is worth your time by visiting there website to learn more and start an account for free.

Resource that is Potentially Helpful

This resource has many tools to offer helpful information for managing debt, saving money and important credit score details.

Start using this resource to see for yourself whether this is worth using.

It is pretty hard to argue against using this resource primarily because it is free and has lots of potentially helpful information.

You can check out this video to see how important this resource can be for preventing hard inquiries on your credit account.

If you are interested in learning about another potentially helpful resource, read The Penny Hoarder Review.

I hope that you liked this post, which focused on the Review of Credit Karma, and learned some useful information.

If you have any questions, please leave them below and I will answer them as best as I can.

8 Replies to “Review of Credit Karma – Potential Resource”

  1. What a nice post you wrote! I really enjoyed reading it and I could not be silent about your post so I decided to leave my comment here and say Thank You! For sharing this quality post with others.
    Actually this is exactly the information that I was looking for information about the credit Karma and when I landed on your website and read this post, it answered all my questions in detail.
    So I’m happy that you decided to write about this topic and share it with people. It’s very useful and can definitely be used as a great source for everyone who is interested in this topic.
    I will come back to your website again for sure and I’m looking forward to reading your new posts.)


  2. When I make a decision on whether I should do something or not, I always take into account the potential risks/benefits. There is hardly any risk, if any at all for a free service(s), so there is really no reason not to at least try it. Thanks for the info!



  3. Hi Jesse,
    This is a great post on Credit Karma.
    To be honest, I never think that much about my credit rating, but maybe it’s because I’m older and live in Canada.
    It’s not something we Canadians talk much about, I guess.
    But my son is now living in the US, and he finds that it’s a bigger deal down there.
    He uses Credit Karma now and will often tell me how his score is improving.
    Is this something Canadians can use? Does it translate to the same metrics that our insurances and banks use?
    Thanks again,

    1. You are welcome!
      Credit Karma is definitely in Canada and you can use it for free there.
      It should translate to the same metrics that your insurances and banks use.
      I like to watch as my score gradually increases as well as to help monitor my credit score.
      I am happy that you liked this post!

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