Getting to know someone can be a long process, one that most of us don’t have the time for.
Whether it’s a new neighbor, or a potential date, having some background information on the individual can provide you with insight and some peace of mind - which is why you need to know the best background check services today!
Anyone can be anyone, especially on the internet.
That said, with so many options to choose from, how do you know which background check services are the best?
Fortunately, we’ve taken the time to identify the best background check services out there - all of which are detailed below.
Disclaimer:TruthFinder, Intelius, and Instant Checkmate does not provide Consumer Reports and is not a Consumer Reporting Agency under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Do not use this information for consumer credit, employment or tenant screening.
1. TruthFinder - Best Background Check Service Overall
- Wide array of services
- Dark web searches
- Good selection of pricing plans
- A+ rating with the BBB
- Identity theft protection
- No 24/7 customer service
- Background checks can be expensive
- $28.05/mo (1 month recurring)
- $23.28/mo (Power Users - Billed at $46.56 every two months)
- $4.99/reverse phone lookup
For searching public records, few services compare to TruthFinder. Founded in 2015, the service is quick, simple to use, and great for finding out the truth about people in your life.
If all you’re after is the best background check service around, then consider yourself lucky, you’ve found it.
Truthfinder Services Offered - 5/5
TruthFinder offers a wide range of background check services, including - but not limited to - criminal history, bankruptcies, and property records.
The site’s also great for looking up long-lost family members or schoolmates, and with just a name, you may get their current address, phone number, associations, and known aliases.
Other types of information TruthFinder may provide include social media accounts, past addresses, education history, relatives, assets, criminal records, and more.
TruthFinder and TransUnion have partnered up to offer an identity theft protection service that scans the depths of the dark web for any sign that your personal details have been used/sold for illicit purposes.
A definite winner with me.
Truthfinder Ease of Use - 4.9/5
One aspect we like about TruthFinder is how simple the service is to use. With just a person’s first and last name, TruthFinder can search public records across all 50 states in a matter of minutes.
The site also deserves credit for providing users with an intuitive website/interface. All services are separated into 4 main categories making it simple to find the exact type of background report you’re after:
- People Search
- Reverse Phone Lookup
- Public Records Search
- Background Checks
Truthfinder Results Quality - 5/5
TruthFinder offers highly comprehensive background checks and the search results don’t disappoint. Along with basic information like name, address, criminal records, etc., results may come equipped with a photo of the individual in question (assuming one exists online)
TruthFinder does not provide Consumer Reports and is not a Consumer Reporting Agency under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Do not use this information for consumer credit, employment or tenant screening
2. Intelius - Best for Reverse Phone Lookups
- Unlimited background checks
- Reports may include social media data
- Excellent for reverse number lookups
- Affordable pricing plans
- Detailed background check report
- Not suitable for credit checks
- No insight into financial history
- $42.25/60 days (billed every 2 months)
- $24.86/30 days
Have you been receiving calls from unknown phone numbers? If so, you may want to give Intelius a try.
With millions of public records at its disposal, Intelius is one of the best background check services for looking up phone numbers and previous addresses.
The service is also known for its ability to extract important data from social media pages, which can help you relocate old friends or gain some intel on your new love interest or neighbor.
Intelius Services Offered 4.8/5
Like TruthFinder, Intelius offers everything from criminal records search, location history, and much more.
One of the most commonly performed searches on Intelius is the reverse number lookup. This feature has proven useful to individuals who’ve noticed their spouse is receiving regular calls from an unknown number.
Once you’re able to put an identity to the number, you can perform an even more detailed background check on the one calling.
Likewise, if you’ve lost contact with an old friend from high school, you can use their old phone number or home address history to track them down.
Each report is broken down into 4 main sections:
- Basic information
- Social media summary
- Criminal history
- List of known relatives
Intelius Ease of Use - 4.8/5
Compared to many other background check sites we looked at, Intelius has done its best to make its platform straightforward and easy to use. When conducting a background check on someone, the site lets you start the process using a phone number, name, or address.
One aspect we’re sure you’ll appreciate is that all searches are 100% confidential, meaning no one will ever know you looked them up.
Intelius Results Quality - 4.7/5
One thing that separates Intelius from many of its competitors is the inclusion of social media data in its background check reports. That said, Intelius does allow people to remove themselves from its database, something that could affect search results.
That minor issue aside, Intelius is easily one of the best background check services we’ve come across - especially for first-time users.
Intelius does not provide Consumer Reports and is not a Consumer Reporting Agency under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Do not use this information for consumer credit, employment or tenant screening
3. Instant Checkmate - Best for Criminal Background Checks
- Detailed background checks
- Great for looking up inmates & criminal records
- Includes information like liens & bankruptcies
- Checks government watch lists
- Report process is slow
- Some issues with accuracy have been reported
- $35.12/month with 1 month membership
- $28.09/month with 3 month membership
Not everyone is upfront about their past, and if you feel like someone you know may be lying to you, Instant checkmate provides an excellent criminal background check service.
Instant Checkmate Services Offered - 4.6/5
Instant Checkmate offers the standard array of services you’ll find at most background check companies, which includes Phone number lookup, location history, death records, and more.
However, where the site really shines is with its criminal record check services. When looking up a person’s criminal history, a standard report will include the current age of the person in question, where the crime was committed, the disposition date, and the date they were charged.
CheckMate also offers an inmate search tool, something you won’t see available on many other background check companies.
Instant Checkmate Ease of Use - 4.8/5
Despite its name, Instant Checkmate can be slow to produce a report. Still, the service is simple to use and a background check can be initiated in just a few clicks.
Instant Checkmate runs the provided name and info against Federal, State, and County records. During the search, you’ll be asked questions like whether or not the person is over the age of 40 or if they’ve ever lived in a specific location.
These answers are used to further refine the results and produce a report which contains up-to-date contact details, social media accounts, info on relatives, and - of course - their public criminal records.
Instant Checkmate Results Quality - 5/5
Because Instant Checkmate searches Federal, State, and County databases, the background reports it produces are extremely in-depth. These reports also contain some financial information that other services stay away from, like tax liens, bankruptcies, and even assets at risk.
Moreover, if the person you’re searching for has been included in a public government watchlist, this information will also appear in the report.
Instant Checkmate does not provide Consumer Reports and is not a Consumer Reporting Agency under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Do not use this information for consumer credit, employment or tenant screening
4. Spokeo - Background Check Site with Fast Results
- Fast results
- Excellent resource for people searching
- Reports can be purchased individually
- Grants access to some wealth and financial data
- Very affordable
- No international background checks
- Reports can be lacking in information
- $19.95/month with 1 month membership
- $14.95/month with 3 month membership
- $1.95/single background check report
For simplicity, you won’t find a better background check company than Spokeo. Launched in 2006, Spokeo functions like a search engine for people and claims to service over 18 million users each year.
Spokeo Services Offered - 4.3/5
Most people who use Spokeo do so to look for people, most commonly estranged family members and old friends. However, the site also specializes in financial information and can be used to look up an individual’s investments, estimated salary, and property titles.
Spokeo Ease of Use - 4.8/5
Spokeo’s interface takes a ‘less is more approach’ and is refreshingly easy to use. It doesn’t overload you with information and options and the process of conducting a background check is as simple as it gets.
If you’re short on time, conducting a background check on Spokeo takes less than a minute. What’s more, each background check report can be purchased individually, meaning you don’t have to commit to a monthly subscription if you’re only after one or two reports.
Spokeo Results Quality - 4.5/5
Because it only takes a few seconds to run a background check on Spokeo, the results contain much less information than what you would get with other services. Still, we were impressed by the accuracy of the data, especially when it came to tracking down past locations and social media profiles.
5. US Search - Most Reputable Service
- Affordable unlimited background checks
- Quality reverse phone lookup feature
- 25+ years in operation
- Works great for personal background checks
- Not great for in-depth reports
- Not suitable for employment background checks
With over 25 years in the business, US Search is one of the most established background check sites on the net.
While the searches may not be as comprehensive as some of the other sites we’ve looked at, it’s still a great tool for finding people you’ve lost contact with.
US Search Services Offered - 4.5/5
US Search does one thing - it offers basic background checks using a name, address, or phone number. There’s no advanced search function or special features and the reports are fairly basic.
Nevertheless, at $19.85/month for unlimited background checks, US Search does offer a great deal of value, especially if you’re just trying to find old high school, military, or work friends. To make things even easier, the site accepts PayPal payments.
US Search Ease of Use - 4.7/5
The background check process at US Search is about as easy as they come. Simply enter a name or address and press start. While it’s performing its check, the site will ask you if you care to include social media information as well.
Once the report is complete, simply enter your email address and payment information and the results are sent straight to your inbox.
US Search Results Quality - 4.2/5
If you’re looking to get deep into employment history, criminal records, or financial information, US Search isn’t the service for you. The reports produced by the company are basic and aren’t designed to pry deep into people’s personal lives. Instead, US Search acts as a simple tool for finding and reconnecting with long-lost friends and family members.
6. InfoTracer - In-Depth Background Check Service
- 7-day trial for $3.95
- Massive catalog of different search options
- Tons of pay-as-you business options
- Some services only available to businesses
- Limited social media results
- $1.5 - $30 for pay-as-you-go business solutions
InfoTracer is a powerful background check tool that offers an impressive level of depth and convenient pay-as-you-go services for businesses.
InfoTracer Services Offered - 5/5
InfoTracer goes much deeper than most background check services and the platform lets you search for information like political contributions, court judgments, arrest records, IP addresses, and much more.
If you want to know whether someone truly holds a medical or law license, the site also runs professional licenses background checks.
InfoTracer Ease of Use - 4.6/5
With so many options to choose from, the InfoTracer homepage can feel overwhelming at times. However, once you locate the service you wish to use, there’s nothing confusing about the process.
On the business side, InfoTracer offers a wealth of pay-as-you-go services including UCC searches, vehicle history, license plate verification, and more.
Unfortunately, because these services are FCRA compliant, they can only be used by businesses.
InfoTracer Results Quality - 4.9/5
Overall, we were really impressed with the depth of information provided by InfoTracer. However, because of the lengths that InfoTracer goes to retrieve information, compiling a report can take a few minutes.
InfoTracer does lack in the social media department, so if you’re looking for a background report that includes in-depth info about an individual’s social media presence, you may want to look elsewhere.
7. PeopleFinders - Top Site for Address History
Sometimes, all the information you have about someone is a name and where they used to live.
Luckily, with PeopleFinders, this is all you need to track them down.
The company traces its roots back to 1999 and was one of the original data as a service (Daas) providers in the digitized record space. Today, PeopleFinders is one of the best background check services in operation and owns a whopping 43 billion records from which it sources its reports.
PeopleFinders Services Offered - 4.6/5
PeopleFinders lets you search for people using a name, home address, email address, and phone number. The site also offers an advanced search tool where you can further refine your search results by adding a middle name and age range.
There’s also a reverse email address tool available. Because there’s no verification process for opening up an email address, it can be hard to track down where certain messages come from. To solve this, PeopleFinders checks the address in question against social media profiles and public records to see if they find a match.
PeopleFinders Ease of Use - 4.4/5
When you enter in a name or address, PeopleFinders will begin by scanning social media sites. Besides the most popular names like Facebook and Instagram, the service looks at other platforms like Vimeo, Tumblr, and even Pinterest.
Next, it searches public records for everything from professional licenses, court records, and more. All this information is then compiled into a report, which can be purchased individually or as part of a monthly subscription.
PeopleFinders Results Quality - 4.8/5
With access to over 43 billion records, PeopleFinders is no doubt one of the best background check services available. Once a background check is completed, you can choose between a basic or detailed version of the report.
The former only contains basic info like name, phone number, current address, and relatives. The latter strongly expands on this and gives you information on bankruptcies, property records, misdemeanors, and even a search of the sex offender registry.
8. BeenVerified - Top Background Check Site for Property Lookup
Real estate investors/developers are always looking for abandoned or rundown homes they can flip for a profit. However, if no one is living on the property, it can be hard to find out who the owner is.
For a fast and affordable solution to this, we recommend BeenVerified - a New York-based background screening company that’s been in business since 2007.
BeenVerified Services Offered - 4.9/5
BeenVerified is special in that it lets you run background checks on just the information you want. For example, the site will let you look up the owner of a house/vehicle or scan the public records for liens and unpaid taxes.
Several business solutions are offered, and the company uses its extensive records database to help businesses in employee recruitment and even generate B2B sales leads.
BeenVerified Ease of Use - 4.6/5
For basic people searches, you’re unlikely to have any issues using BeenVerified. That said, the B2B solutions require a bit more information and may be confusing to some. Fortunately, BeenVerified has customer support available 7 days a week until 11:30 pm each day.
For looking up property owners, simply enter the address and state and wait for BeenVerified to work its magic. Because homeownership is a matter of public record, you can be sure the results you get are accurate.
BeenVerified Results Quality - 4.8/5
The type of results you’ll receive from BeenVerified is in line with what you would expect from any other top background check provider. At the same time, BeenVerified’s B2B and property look-up tools are unique and aren’t something you’ll find available everywhere.
9. GoodHire - Best Employment Background Check Company
Because GoodHire is certified under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, it can run detailed employment background checks that look at credit history, criminal records, and even professional licenses.
GoodHire Services Offered - 4/5/5
GoodHire performs background checks and screening services for small and large businesses. The list of available services is large and includes items like drug screening, education history verification, driving records, and even international background checks.
The company also helps you with compliance issues by letting you know what you can and can’t do with the information you’re provided.
GoodHire Ease of Use - 4.4/5
When using GoodHire, you must decide whether you plan on doing more or less than 10 employee background checks per month. From there, simply provide your contact information and the name of your company.
Unlike personal background check services, you’ll have to wait for GoodHire to contact you, which they normally do within one or two business days.
GoodHire Results Quality - 4.6/5
When it comes to employee background checks, few providers offer a more in-depth review than GoodHire. In fact, the company is the trusted screening agency of several well-known outfits like DraftKings, Parts Authority, and more.
GoodHire is also certified by the PBSA (Professional Background Screening Agency), so you know everything is done professionally and by the book.
10. Backgroundchecks.com - Best for Tenant Screening
- Offers business & personal backcheck services
- Access to international criminal records
- FCRA & PBSA certified
- Reference verification service for tenant screening
- Only businesses can access credit checks
- $29.95 - $64.95/report
- Varies for business solutions
BackgroundChecks.com is an FCRA accredited company that performs background checks for businesses and individuals.
Although their services are considerably more expensive than many other providers, they produce some of the most detailed reports around.
BackgroundChecks.com Services Offered - 4.8/5
BackgroundCheck.com’s catalog of available services is extensive.
If you’re a landlord looking to rent out one of your properties, BackgroundChecks.com runs a robust reference verification service that’ll give you some valuable insight when choosing a tenant.
The site also has an industry-leading criminal background check service called oneSEARCH. This runs the individual(s) in question against a database of over 100 national and international lists of criminal history and arrest warrants.
BackgroundChecks.com Ease of Use - 4.6/5
None of the personal services offered by BackgroundChecks.com are approved by the FCRA, meaning credit checks and employee screening tools are only available to businesses. That said, you can still use their expansive database to look someone up with just a name and address.
On the business side, you’ll have to fill out a small form detailing what your business is and how many checks you’ll need per month. Someone from the customer service team will then contact you.
BackgroundChecks.com Results Quality - 5/5
When conducting a check, BackgroundCheck.com doesn’t leave many stones unturned. Moreover, the fact that the company has access to international court records means its criminal background checks are some of the most comprehensive around.
If you don’t mind paying top dollar for top service, BackgroundCheck.com truly is one of the best background check providers you’ll come across.
What’s the Best Background Check Service?
Remember, if you plan on using one of the listed services for employee or tenant screening, you must stick to an FCRA-approved provider. For personal use, any one of the 12 companies we detailed above will work!
Thank you for reading, and until next time!