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You cannot use an ITIN to build credit...

No. You can’t use an individual tax identification number (or “ITIN”) to build credit and credit scores to get loans instead of your social security number. Don’t get me wrong, I admire creativeness. But, the line is drawn.

This concept – of trade-lines and ITINS – originates from two scenarios: First, people think using ITINs is better than using CPNs (and SSNs, for that matter). Second, people who are legitimately eligible for an ITIN wish to build credit on their ITIN since they’re not eligible for an SSN.

In both situations, the ITIN is not an option.


You’re not going to sneak through an ITIN in place of your SSN.

They are extremely easy to identify. Here’s the structure of an ITIN.

“IRS began assigning ITINs effective July 1,1996. Subject to a 1997 Memorandum of Understanding between SSA and IRS, IRS agreed that ITINs will be nine digits beginning with the number “9” and initially will have either “7” or “8” in the 4th position.

That’s from the Statement Of James B. Lockhart, Deputy Commissioner For Social Security.

Now we know how to identify an ITIN.


Is that an ITIN? No.


Is that an ITIN? Yes

(Thanks to the people at Superior Trade-Lines for great information)

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