How Often Does Your Credit Score Change?

Man checking his credit score on a computer
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You may check your credit score one day and notice that it's moved up or down from the previous day, even if you're checking the same credit bureau's credit score. This is normal.

How Often Does Your Credit Score Change?

Your credit score could change as often as daily depending on how often your credit report is updated. Remember, your credit score is a numerical summary of the information in your credit report. Your creditors and lenders are continuously making updates to your credit report throughout the month. Each time you check your credit score, it's recalculated based on the information in your credit report. This is why your credit score may be one number on one day and a different number on the next day.

Your credit score might also remain stagnant for several days then suddenly gain or lose several points.

While your credit score can change daily, it doesn't respond instantly to actions you take with your credit. For example, if you pay off a credit card today, your credit score won't reflect that payment tomorrow. That's because there's typically a delay between the time you take the action and the time the credit card issuer (or other business) reports that change to the credit bureaus. Give your credit score time to respond to your efforts to improve it.

What Do Credit Score Changes Mean?

Your credit score may fluctuate daily, but don't rely on these small movements - whether up or down - as an indication as to whether your credit is improving. Instead, judge the movement of your credit score over a period of time, several weeks or months, to get an idea of where your credit is headed. On the other hand, if you see a big drop in your credit score, investigate it further to see what's caused such a major change in your credit score.

You can monitor daily changes to your Equifax and TransUnion credit scores via Credit Karma and monthly changes to your Experian credit score via Credit Sesame. Both services are free and don't require a credit card. They're both great services to track changes to your credit scores and include tools to let you know how the information in your credit report has changed. This makes it easier to gauge what credit report information is contributing to movements in your credit score.