The credit score system has a direct bearing on consumers’ finances. A bad credit score can undermine an individual’s ability to secure loans to buy a home, a vehicle or fund a business venture. The score comes in the form of a three-digit number used to determine the creditworthiness of consumers. Lenders make lending decisions based on the scores with the aim to militate against the risk of non-payment.

The score determines the interest rate charged on the loans, such as mortgage and credit card debt. Lenders gauge the risk posed by a borrower based on historical transactions. Hence, it is vital for individuals to keep their credit score at an acceptable level avoid being denied access to critical funds or having to pay higher interest rates. When it comes to married couples, lenders consider the credit score of the concerned partner if the loan application is not co-signed.

In the event that the loan is co-signed, the credit scores of both partners are taken into account. If the score of one of the co-signees is bad, this may negatively influence the interest rate applicable to the loan. The application may be declined if the lender is convinced that the couple poses a considerable risk when it comes repayment.

Fortunately, the Credit Secrets CS or creditsecretsbook provides practical guidelines on how to manage credit scores and personal finances. The credit secrets reviews are useful for anyone looking to balance their finances or improve chances of being approved for loans.

Credit scores range between 300 and 850. Consumers are urged to maintain higher scores as a means to improve chances of loan approval and benefiting from lower interest rates. Consumers should regularly check their score and the transactions appearing on their record. In some cases, the score can be based on inaccurate information. Hence, it is vital to update the details, particularly when repaid debts are still affecting the overall score. A number of online and offline platforms provide a viable way to check the current credit score.

Credit scoring system

The Fair Isaac Corporation created the FICO, which is one of the popular systems used by lenders. A number of credit bureaus, such as Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion rely on the system. However, the bureaus may have different scores for a given individual because they employ varying statistical models to determine the applicable rating.

Additionally, the variations are due to the different reporting methods used by lenders and businesses when they share information with the credit bureaus. In turn, the credit reporting agencies present the information based on their proprietary scoring systems, which differ significantly.

On the other hand, the criteria used by lenders to qualify loan applicants influences the final decision. Lenders rely on scores from at least one of the credit bureaus, which means the choice of an agency has a bearing on the outcome of the application.

Credit scoring components

Credit bureaus take into account a wide variety of scoring components, including payment history, new credit (inquiries), outstanding amounts, type of credit and credit utilization. The components carry varying weight, which means they affect consumers’ scores differently.

Payment history and the amount owed carry the most weight (35 and 30 percent respectively). Length of history influences lenders’ decisions by 15 percent while type of credit and new credit inquiries impact loan applications by 10 percent.

Payment history covers loans from the past and focuses on how the debts were repaid. The component takes into account different types of credit, including installment loans, student finance, mortgages, automobile loans, credit cards, retail accounts and more. The credit report agencies gather information on foreclosures, wage attachments, liens, bankruptcies, suits and judgments to determine the applicable score.

Late or missed payments do not improve the score. Consumers are scored favorably when they boast a verifiable history of prompt payments or at least the payment of the minimum amount.

The credit utilization or amounts owed component is used to determine the degree of indebtedness. High outstanding balances have a negative effect on the rating. Experts recommend not exceeding 30 percent of the credit limit on loans associated with the credit card. On the other hand, installment loans should be repaid on time. This allows the credit bureaus to look at the borrower positively even if a significant amount is still outstanding. The payment pattern reflects responsible debt management by avoiding late payments or defaulting on the credit.

When it comes to the type of credit, the agencies consider the use of lines of credit responsibly. A consumer who buys a boat or other items deemed as luxury using a credit card does not demonstrate the level of responsibility required to score favorably.