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Most people know that their credit score is an important piece of information to have—but not everyone is aware that they have more than one. Now FICO is making different versions of consumer credit scores available to them for the first time ever.
When people apply for a mortgage, an auto loan or a credit card, potential lenders check applicants’ credit scores. FICO scores are the basis for approximately 90% of credit lending decisions, according to the company.
Data from Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian, the threemain credit bureaus, is used to compile various FICO scores. The company sells a base product called FICO Score 8, as well as up to 10 more versions of a person’s credit score. Half of these 10 are based on Experian data and half come from Equifax information.Five more scores are based on TransUnion data, but will not be available to consumers until later this year.
Consumers get the scoop on their scores
Consumers can purchase their other scores in the meantime so they see what the lenders see. By purchasing their scores through myFICO.com, people will get access to their main FICO Score 8, plus all the additional scores now available. They will also receive information about the factors that influence their scores, which scores are used for which type of credit decisions, and how different lenders evaluate scores.
FICO introduced the first FICO scoring model 25 years ago and it has evolved over the years. The FICO Score Open Access program allows consumers to find out their basic FICO Score for free, but if people want more than just the score, including monitoring and alerts, a FICO Score 8 simulator and additional versions of the FICO Score from all three bureaus are available.
For most consumers, the basic free FICO score would be sufficient. FICO scores are based on information from credit bureaus about things like consumer payment history, debt-to-available-credit ratio, length of credit history, and types of credit.