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Is it at all possible to get an 850 FICO® credit score? Yes, an 850 FICO Score isn't that unreachable as you may think. An Experian study found that as of the third quarter of 2021, 1.31% of all credit-holding Americans had a FICO Score of 850.
A perfect credit score generally requires years of exemplary credit behavior, which includes on-time payments, low credit utilization ratio, and credit accounts with long history. Here are some common traits of credit profiles with perfect scores (in comparison with national average):
- More tradelines (credit products) on credit reports,
- A mix of credit (credit cards, car loans, installment loans, mortgage, etc.),
- Very low card balances,
- A low credit utilization rate,
- No delinquent tradelines ever,
- A long-standing credit history.
Thus, if a perfect credit score is your goal, you need to pay on time and never miss a payment as your payment history makes 35% of your FICO Score. You may also want to pay your credit card bill more often than just once a month. You can pay weekly or biweekly to avoid carrying a balance.
Furthermore, you may also want to increase your credit limit. It will be easier to keep your credit utilization low with higher credit limits, which can have a positive impact on your credit score. You can increase your credit limits by contacting your current credit card issuers and requesting a credit limit increase. Or you can apply for a new credit card to increase your overall available credit.
If you have old credit accounts, try to keep them open as long as you can. Of course, that does not work for personal loans, but it works well with revolving line of credits like credit cards. When you keep old accounts open, it greatly increases your length of credit history, which makes up 15% of your FICO credit score.
It is also important to regularly monitor your credit reports to spot errors or incorrect information that can decrease your credit score. For example, unauthorized hard inquiries may lower your credit score and signify fraud.
It is certainly possible to get a perfect credit score, but it is not a constant number and won't stay at 850 forever. There are too many things that may affect it, so you don't need to be meticulous about it.