What Is A Good Credit Score


  • Author Chuck Machado
  • Published May 9, 2010
  • Word count 859

I get asked all the time, what is a good credit score, and like everything else in life, my response is, it depends. For most people a credit score above 700 is generally considered to be a good score, but if you are emerging from bankruptcy, it may take a while to raise your credit score above 500. At the higher end of the spectrum is a credit score above 800. In the old days, AKA, six years ago, an 800 credit score was pretty common, but not anymore. The credit score range is 300 to 850 and most consider anything above 700 to be good credit. The problem is that each agency has their own way of calculating a credit score.

Then, there is the question of which of the three major credit reporting agencies are you talking about?

Before we begin, please try to remember that you are not your credit score. Yes, you may have had hard times. You may be the victim of an economic downturn and you may have even fallen behind on your bills, but a credit report score does not define the person you are. It is merely an indicator of how likely it is that you will be a good credit risk in the future. Credit scores are dynamic, which means they change every day. Yesterday's 500 might be tomorrow's 600.

Here's a refresher on your question, what is a good credit score.

There exist three major credit reporting agencies in the United States. Each is charged with gathering and reporting the buying and spending habits of individuals who use credit. Since most people are not able to plunk down cash for large purchases, like a home, people rely on the leverage of credit for ownership. This type of spending extends to every day purchases too. Cars, electronics, travel and college, are items being financed. Interest rates are issued depending on risk.

The three major credit reporting agencies are Equifax, Experian and Transunion. If you purchase anything on credit, your credit report score will be recorded in one or all of these databases. Though your score will never be the same from each, your spending habits as well as how timely you pay your lenders are part of the credit matrix which ultimately is defined by a credit report score.

Listed below is a rough explanation of the credit score scale and how your credit report scores are determined. Keep in mind that you are in control of your credit score. Depending on how you handle your finances will determine how much you pay in interest rates.

Approximately 35% of your score is based on your payment history.

Are you late in paying your bills or are you on time? Have you filed bankruptcy? Keep in mind that certain consumer debt, like credit card purchases, are amortized daily. This debt is deadly and best paid earlier than 30 days.

Approximately 30% of your score is based on how much you owe.

there is a formula used that calculated the amount of debt you are allowed to have and how much of that credit you have used up. This ratio is very important as it tells an important story of how well or poorly you are living. If you are relying on credit to finance your lifestyle or if you are a casual user, this is important to lenders. Try to keep this debt to credit ratio under 30%. That means if your credit card limit is $5000, don't carry a balance of more than $1500 at any given time.

Approximately 15% of your score is based on the length of your payment history.

How long you've been at the game of credit is a factor used to determine your credit score. A longer credit history will be a plus as long as you show responsible debt management.

Approximately 10% of your score is based on new credit.

Old credit is better than new credit because it shows history and like a favorite old shirt, the lenders are comfortable with the familiar. A question that keeps coming up is how new credit checks affect your credit score and the answer is that they usually drop slightly. Except when you are shopping for a home mortgage, you can expect that by opening new credit, your score will be affected. If you are shopping for a loan, do so in a fixed period of time and the reporting agency will note this.

Approximately 10% of your score is based on miscellaneous factors.

What type of credit do you carry? Installment loans? Revolving credit, credit cards and auto loans, home loans and various lines of credit. Usually this has a stabilizing effect on your credit score because it is normal for people with longer history to carry these types of debt. Certain loans, like jewelry and last resort types of credit will decrease your score.

You can get assistance if you feel you have been treated unfairly in matters of credit. By law lenders are not allowed to consider race, religion or gender in evaluating your credit applications. Your credit scores too will not be based on these factors and if you believe you are being discriminated because of these, contact an attorney.

Chuck Machado is with the commercial finance company CMA Capital Funding Inc, located in Southern California. He writes extensively about loans, debt, and commercial financing. If you have questions or comments, he encourages his readers to contact him through his website http://www.raise-credit-score.net

Article source: http://articlebiz.com
This article has been viewed 4,133 times.

Rate article

Article comments

There are no posted comments.

Related articles