Expert tips on when to freeze and unfreeze your credit

Make sure to unfreeze credit when applying for loans
Published: May. 4, 2023 at 5:13 PM EDT
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InvestigateTV - Around 95% of car insurance companies use credit scores to help determine premium rates in the 45 states that allow it, according to the Fair Issac Corporation (FICO).

In a few of those states, a frozen credit score will come back as a “no hit” and could be treated as if the account has no credit history.

Cherry Dale, a financial coach with the Virginia Credit Union, said that could lead to higher premiums.

Dale said that not all carriers pull credit every year, so consumers with credit freezes should ask their agents when the companies pull reports and let them know their credit is frozen.

“And you can unfreeze it and the bureaus have up to three days to get that credit unfroze,” she said. “So that insurance companies can have access to see what you’re doing with your credit.”

Dale explained there are states that allow credit reviews for insurance purposes even if the files are frozen. But it’s always good practice to make insurance agents aware of the freeze.

She added that anyone getting ready to apply for a car, home, or personal loan will need to unfreeze their credit. It can be frozen again once the loan is secured.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has information on how to freeze credit here.