If you watch TV or are on the internet, then you have most likely seen an ad for a free credit score. You may have even gotten one, but the question is what is this free credit score actually telling you, and is the information you receive worth anything?
Is Your Free Credit Score Accurate?
Credit rating agencies have made claims that the free credit scores you receive online or through the mail are the same credit scores that lenders use to make credit decisions. It turns out, that’s not actually true. In fact, the scores used by most lenders are not the same as the ones you receive with a free credit score.
So, is the credit score worthless? Actually, it isn’t. You just need to understand what you are seeing and how to use it.
How to Use Your Free Credit Score
There are currently two different types of credit scores. One is called a generic credit score and the other is a custom credit score. A FICO score is an example of a generic credit score.
A score is called generic because any lender can purchase the score and use it. In addition, the score is determined by data compiled on the entire population.
When it comes to lenders making actual credit decisions, they typically use a custom credit score. This is a score that they have built themselves using the data that they feel is most important. This type of score is normally more useful for a lender and most banks will use a custom credit score. As the formula is proprietary, you will never know what actually makes up this score.
It is important to keep in mind that while most lenders use your FICO score when determining whether or not to approve your loan, it is not the only score they use.
While your free credit score might not be the same as the one being used by your lender, it can still be useful information and help you know whether or not you will be approved for a loan.
When it comes to this score, what you want to be the most concerned about is the range of your score instead of the number.
There are three main credit reporting agencies, and when you get your free credit scores, you will receive a number from each agency. Typically these numbers will be different, and while you can’t know which number if any, your lender is using, the ranges of numbers will give you a pretty good idea as to what your credit score actually is.
The best solution is to go with the middle number. That means if your scores are 720, 740, and 730, go with the 730 and you should be in pretty good shape.
In the end, even though your free credit score isn’t perfect. You still won’t receive the same numbers as your lender. Also, don’t worry too much about a few points difference in your score. It is the range that is most important. Finally, use this free report as a tool to help you determine if your credit needs some work or if you are doing just fine.
This information was brought to you by BetterLoanChoice
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