Just as there are many credit scoring models available to lenders looking to explore your credit, there are options available to you, too. If you're paying more attention to your credit these days with the goal of preparing it for something specific — like planning for a new car, new home, or adding more credit into your mix — it may make sense to consult a credit scoring model created with the same goal in mind.
Which score is important to me?
With FICO® Scores, you can select the score that relates best to your current plan, since there are industry-specific scoring models tailored to specific types of credit, such as auto loans or credit cards. While they're similar to the base FICO Score in many ways, industry-specific scores help lenders with highly refined predictions based on their own unique scoring needs. Depending on the financing you're seeking, when you look at an industry-specific score, you could be consulting the same exact scoring model that your lender uses — built on a model tuned to their needs.
If it's a new car you have your eye on, your FICO® Auto Score can be helpful since it's the industry-specific score used in the majority of auto financing-related credit decisions. Similarly, if you're applying for a new credit card, knowing your FICO® Bankcard Score can be a plus since it's the industry-specific score that many credit card issuers use.
Remember that though there are multiple FICO Score versions in use, they share the same foundation and goal: to successfully identify higher risk from lower risk applicants. Similarly, the same basic good credit behaviors are reflected in them, things like paying your bills on time, keeping a handle on your credit card balances, and being selective when seeking new credit. When those are a part of your regular credit activity, your FICO Score should be well received across all the FICO scoring models.
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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, or other company, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. All information, including rates and fees, are accurate as of the date of publication.