Credit Report & Scores » Score Advice

Score Advice

A credit score is a three-digit number based on data pulled from your credit report, and it is one of several factors that lenders use to determine whether they should give you a loan or credit card. Your score can also affect what terms and interest rates you qualify to receive.

Latest Articles

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The VantageScore and the FICO score are two different scoring models used by lenders...

What’s the highest FICO score achievable?

The highest credit score depends on the scoring system the lender is using. There...

Does an overdraft on my checking account affect my credit score?

Checking account overdrafts do not directly affect your credit scores. However, if the overdraft...

How do you get a free FICO score?

You can get a free FICO score from Experian by going to You...

How can I raise my credit score?

Everyone’s credit history is unique so it depends on the individual. Start by getting...

How can I raise my credit score fast?

I need to boost my credit score in a 1-2 month span...

How Often Does Your Credit Score Change?

Why doesn’t my credit score update or change? The last date on...

What credit score do I need to buy a house?

My FICO credit score is “stuck” at 680. I have not had...

How is your credit score determined?

Scores are determined by five different categories of information in your credit report. Payment...

How often should I check my credit score?

Check your credit report at least once a year, if not more often, as...

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When it comes to your credit scores, knowledge is power! Be an expert on...

Does everyone start out with the same credit score?

In essence, we all start out with no score at all (not zero). You...

What is Provided with Your Credit Score

In addition to learning your three-digit score, a credit score is typically provided with a description of what items from your credit report most affected the score, both positively and negatively.

Credit Report vs. Credit Score

Credit reports and credit scores are two separate items lenders use to learn more about your financial history and the likelihood you’ll pay your bills in the future. While related, credit scores are not part of a credit report. Credit scores are based on information from your credit report, but must be requested separately.

Many different factors affect your credit score and each will vary depending on what credit scoring system is used.

Credit Score Factors

Each credit scoring system uses mathematical algorithms to generate a rating to help lenders better assess your creditworthiness. Credit scoring systems can consider hundreds of factors from your credit history when calculating a score. Some of the most common include:

  • Credit history
  • Payment history
  • Public records
  • Utilization rate
  • New accounts
  • Number of inquiries
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