CREDIT SCORES BY THE NUMBERS
Posted on: Aug. 27, 2017 in Credit Score

Everyone wants to have a good credit score. You understand what having a high score can do for you such as help you get the best loans and credit cards. But what exactly is good? What number should you aspire to reach? The answer to that can be a little tricky.

The biggest complication is that there isn’t just one credit score. There are about six major scoring models and each has its own score range.

  • FICO: 300-850
  • Vantage Score 3.0: 300-850
  • Vantage Score 1.0 and 2.o: 501-990
  • Experian’s PLUS Score: 330-830
  • TransUnion New Account Score 2.0: 300-850
  • Equifax Credit Score: 280-850

FICO and Vantage Score 3.0 are probably the two most widely used, but that’s not always the case. The good news is that these two scores use the same range, even if the tiers within that range are different. At the end of the day, the higher your score, the better. Just keep in mind that what might be only fair for one model could rate as good on another, and that your score itself may differ from model to model.

It’s also important to keep in mind that each lender has their own criteria and approval guidelines, so one company may only approve loans for people with good credit while others will accept someone whose credit is fair. Companies can also alter the terms of a loan, such as the interest rate, depending on your score.

As an example, let’s take a look at the FICO tier breakdown:

  • Excellent: 750+
  • Good Credit: 700-749
  • Fair Credit: 650-699
  • Poor Credit: 600-649
  • Bad Credit: below 600

One thing that does tend to stay the same is what the credit models look for to build your score. The same five categories are included and, for the most part, the percentage impact each category has tends to remain the same. Here are the general categories and their weight on your score.

  • Payment History makes up 35%
  • Credit Utilization makes up 30%
  • Length of Credit History makes up for 15%
  • Mix of Accounts makes up 10%
  • New Credit Inquires makes up 10%

It can seem difficult to understand your score with all these different numbers flying around. Knowing that whatever you score you’re aware of may not be your only score can also make matters confusing. But knowing how high your score could be and seeing where you are on any one of the scales can give you an idea of what lenders see when you apply for a loan.

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