A few Saturdays ago, my family sat down to breakfast. I had scrambled eggs and my wife was flipping the final pancakes on the griddle. I remember sitting down next to my 2 year old son and placing my coffee on the table when I heard my wife scream. My first thought was, she burned herself on the stove. But I quickly realized that was not the case. Out of the corner of my eye I saw a bat circling in the kitchen. Let’s just say that I screamed even louder. I ran to the backdoor and opened it in hopes that it would fly out. Unfortunately, it chose to enter the main part of the house and eventually go upstairs….
It took over 50 hours for the bat to finally, once and for all, be removed from my house. It was a horrifying weekend filled with images forever burned in my brain. Seeing a bat circle your dining room leaves a mark. I live in a house that is over 140 years old so there are a myriad of ways the bat could have gotten in. The house has been well cared for by a number of owners over the years so, we thought it was as solid as could be. We ultimately learned that there were many, perhaps too many to count, bats living in the exterior walls of the house. The bats we humanely removed from the walls (did you know bats were an endangered species? I didn’t) and now all is seemingly back to normal. But the experience got me thinking about a project we were developing for Barclaycard Ring. More to come on how that connects with the bats later.
Back in May community member, compnerd, posted an idea called “Credit Fitness Review”. We REALLY liked the idea but there were a number of challenges to face before making it a reality. The biggest issue was the idea of offering credit reviews. Banks need to walk a fine line between being an advocate for their customers and providing advice on what to do. We figured that if we partnered with another industry expert to help facilitate the review, we could make this compelling idea work.
So, I am excited to say that we are going to launch the Credit Fitness Review series and have partnered with Credit Karma for the project. Credit Karma specializes in providing tools for you to improve your credit health. Combining Barclaycard’s insight into how banks view credit, Credit Karma’s tools and expertise and our community, I believe, will be a powerful and insightful view into the world of credit fitness for you.
Many people think their credit is in great shape, just like I thought my house was rock solid. But it turns out we may have bats in our credit walls that we didn’t know existed. Ok, maybe a stretch but maybe I get points for trying.
So here is how the Credit Fitness Review will work:
- Barclaycard Ring members can volunteer to be a part of the series by using the voting section in our Influence area.
- They can select to use their community username or remain anonymous.
- Barclaycard will select one person per month to review.
- That selected member will register and create a profile with Credit Karma.com When they sign up for a free Credit Karma account, they’ll be asked to supply some personal information, like name and address as well as the last four digits of their Social Security Number. This information is required to match the member with their credit data. After they are asked to answer a few security questions to verify their identifythey’ll see their credit score, information about the accounts on their credit report and their Credit Report Card, which grades them on the six most important factors that influence their credit score. Getting their credit score on Credit Karma doesn’t affect their credit at all; it’s known as a soft inquiry. Credit Karma will then examine the credit profile of the volunteer and offer a few suggestions for improving their credit health.
- Barclaycard will interview the volunteer to get a personal angle to the story. We want to make the review more human and more relatable to other member experiences. We won’t post anything that will personally identify the volunteer.
- We’ll post the results of the review as a blog on BarclaycardRing.com and inside the Barclaycard Ring community.
If you are a Barclaycard Ring cardmember and would like to volunteer for the Credit Fitness Review please log into the community and visit the Influence section. We can’t guarantee that all of your credit bats will be removed but, hopefully we can help set you on the path to improving your credit health. If you have any questions or ideas please let us know in the community. Or, if you're not a Barclaycard Ring cardmember and want to share your thoughts on this topic, visit our Facebook page. Jen and I will be happy to discuss.