California Mortgage News

Credit

August 25th, 2015 11:26 AM by George Coronado

All three major credit agencies (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion) use a slightly different system to arrive at a score. Fair Isaac and Cooriginally developed this score. . While Experian still calls its score "FICO", TransUnion calls its score "Beacon" and Equifax uses "Empirica." While the formulas vary from one agency to another, the differences aren't huge; all of the agencies use the following factors to build your credit score:

  • Credit History - How many years have you had credit?
  • Late Payments - Do you pay your bills on time?
  • Your Credit Card Balances - How many credit card accounts do you hold, and how much do you owe?
  • Inquiries on Your Credit - How many times have lenders pulled your credit for the purpose of lending you money?

These factors are weighted differently depending on which formula the agency uses. Each formula produces a single number which may vary a a little from one agency to another. Credit scores range from 300 to 800. Higher is better. Most folks getting a mortgage loan in the current environment have a score above 620.

Credit scores make a difference in your interest rate

FICO scores are used for more than just determining whether or not you qualify for a mortgage. Higher scores indicate you are probably a better credit risk, and thus may qualify for a better mortgage rate.

Raising your FICO score

What can you do to improve your FICO score? Unfortunately, not much. Some companies promise quick fixes, but they can't do anything different than what you can do — for free. (Of course you must appeal incorrect items on your credit report.)

Know your FICO

In order to raise your FICO score, you've got to get the reports that are used to build it. Of course, you need the score as well. Fair Isaac, the company that invented the original FICO score, sells credit scores on myFICO.com. It's inexpensive, fast, and easy to get your credit score as well as credit reports from all three agencies. Also available are helpful information and tools that help you analyze what actions might have the greatest impact on your FICO score.

You can get a federally-mandated free credit report once a year from the three major agencies by visitingAnnualCreditReport.com. While this report does not include a free credit score, the cost to "upgrade" your report to include a credit score is very reasonable.

Now that you have all the facts, you will be a more informed consumer and you'll be better positioned to get the right mortgage for you.

Want to know more about your FICO score? Call us: (661) 948-6440
Posted in:General and tagged: Raise my score
Posted by George Coronado on August 25th, 2015 11:26 AM