Travis Goodreau

Experian and TransUnion are two of the biggest credit reporting agencies. They provide consumers with an accurate and detailed account of their financial portfolio.

Each credit bureau offers information on open accounts, new lines of credit, and information pertaining to the use of your personal and financial information. Monthly access to your credit reports as well as your credit scores is offered by both Experian and TransUnion.

  • Both offer identity theft monitoring
  • Email alerts are used by both companies to alert customers of updates and changes to their credit reports
  • Both offer mobile apps for added convenience
  • Experian offers credit reports from the three primary credit bureaus
  • TransUnion provides unlimited updates for both credit reports and scores


Experian is well-known as one of the top three credit bureaus. It is used by both lenders and consumers alike as a way to rate both financial stability and credit-worthiness. Financial accounts are monitored on a monthly basis. Customers have access to payment information, balances, credit history, and a lengthy credit history so they can fully monitor their financial health.

Experian credit reports are divided into specific sections so that the information is easily accessible. Reports include information on employment, various types of accounts (mortgages, personal loans, auto loans, credit cards, etc.), inquiries made by potential creditors, as well as personal information which includes addresses, social security numbers, and contact information.

Experian also allows its customers to add notes to their credit reports. This allows them to explain unusual or confusing circumstances that may have a negative impact on their credit score. Consumers can also request that they are notified any time a new line of credit is opened. By notifying them prior to the application being approved, the customer can verify or deny that they are the ones filling out the application.


TransUnion has several features that make it popular with its subscribers. In addition to the $1 million identity theft policy, they also offer a Credit Lock option that allows you to “lock” your credit report. The Credit Lock feature prevents anyone else from accessing your credit report and making an inquiry about your financial stability. TransUnion also offers instant alerts. Alerts are sent via email, but when you have their mobile app, you have access to your credit report 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Credit scores provided by TransUnion are sometimes different from those based on the information used to establish FICO stores. The VantageScore system was designed to be an alternative to the more traditional FICO ratings. FICO scores are often calculated using information that can have a more negative effect on the final score. Many of these factors don't have the same type of effect on scores based on the VantageScore system.

Because you can lock your TransUnion credit report, it may not show all of the activity when it comes to new accounts. Credit may still be obtained using the other two credit reporting agencies. While the Credit Lock feature is great for identity theft, it has its downside in terms of keeping your credit profile updated and completely accurate.

Special Considerations

Both Experian and TransUnion offer subscription options that provide customers with more features and easy access to all of the information included on their credit reports. Experian's monthly subscription costs $10 a month, but can be paid for by the year for $100. TransUnion's monthly subscription starts at $20 per month.

It's also good to mention that when comparing customer service ratings, Experian has a much better reputation. TransUnion's customer service seems to fall short in terms of response time and overall transparency.

Our Thoughts: Experian vs TransUnion

Experian is a great choice if you want an in-depth and thorough accounting of all your financial information in one concise location.

TransUnion is an excellent choice with its Credit Lock feature. It allows maximum identity theft protection in addition to its other features.