Letter to Employees: Happy Birthday, Credit Karma!

The number eight is a symbol of good financial fortune and prosperity in Chinese culture. When you consider Credit Karma’s impact on American consumers over the last eight years, there may be some significance to the number eight.

When Credit Karma started in 2007 and launched in 2008, the consumer credit landscape was fundamentally different. Credit score access and credit report monitoring were only for those who could afford hundreds of dollars a year or were fooled into thinking it was a free service. Consumer credit education was lacking and the credit scoring system was opaque and confusing.

Over the last eight years, we have helped make credit data more accessible and easier to understand for everyone. Credit Karma helped pave the way towards truly free credit scores and reports being commonplace. Our members are more prosperous by using our service; our members see an average credit score increase of 12 points per year, and those who are truly engaged often see a much more substantial increase. Better credit leads to more options and lower monthly payments for necessities such as housing, education, and transportation. When you magnify those results across over 50 million Americans and over a billion free scores, I’m humbled by the number of people we’ve helped.

As I think about Credit Karma’s future, I would like for us to re-imagine how each member can use their credit to improve their financial well-being. We have visibility into over three trillion dollars of consumer debt, and we know that a meaningful portion of that debt is mispriced. We also know that banks usually don’t proactively lower rates when credit score improves and that most consumers are not aware when the interest rate environment changes.

The tools to make consumer finance simpler, easier to understand, and more certain do not yet exist. Credit Karma is in a unique position to build them. Very few companies have the scale and resources that we have to tackle such a huge problem, and no one has as deep an expertise in credit and finance. Most importantly, Credit Karma has uniquely consistently focused on great product and putting our members first.

Few thought we would be here eight years ago. In the next eight years, let’s endeavor to build products that reduce the uncertainty of applying for loans, create an unparalleled level of pricing transparency, and remove all of the friction and confusion from the application process. By staying true to our mission, we can improve the fortune of all Americans and make financial progress possible for everyone.

Happy Birthday, Credit Karma!!

Kenneth Lin

Credit Karma CEO and Founder

P.S. The best reminder of the difference we’re making comes from our members themselves:

“I want to thank Credit Karma for such a great service and useful information. I have struggled with my credit since my 20’s. Credit Karma showed me to get on the right path. Thank you, thank you, thank you.”

“Yes, you wonderful souls have helped me turn a HUGE corner. Your service is making the US stronger by setting more of us FREE!! I am SO grateful to you ALL, even down to your nightly cleanup crew! <3”

“I have to admit, I was a skeptic about Credit Karma. We had a rough 2 years but this app truly helps and alerts you with credit report changes.”

“I am SO happy I found out about you guys. Your website gave me the motivation, information, and skills I needed and I am so excited to say… we are closing on our first home on MONDAY!!!!! Thank you Credit Karma!”

“My husband and I are looking into buying a home after about a year of financial trouble. We applied for a loan… and were completely disappointed when we didn’t get approved, even though we were only asking for a nominal amount. I signed up for Credit Karma recently and check it weekly. So thank you for providing such a great service. The ability to monitor my finances directly correlates to my husband and I being able to buy a house and have kids. Please know that your company really does affect people’s lives in large, wonderful ways :)”

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Category:  Culture

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