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What is a good credit score?

Profile picture of Jessica Render
by Jessica Render ConsumerAffairs Research Team
woman checking her credit

Credit scores range from 300 to 850 with 850 being “perfect.” Each creditor has its own benchmarks for a good or excellent score, but in general, an excellent credit score is any number above 750, while a good credit score is 700 to 749.

credit score ranges

Companies use credit scores to determine the likelihood that a borrower will repay a loan, with higher credit scores suggesting more “creditworthy” customers. Credit scores are evaluated distinctly in various situations, including borrowing for a car, a home or a credit card. In general, a home buyer will need a higher credit score than someone interested in receiving a credit card. Typically, those with lower credit scores can expect to receive higher interest rates. It’s important to check your credit score by requesting your credit reports at least once a year.

VantageScore vs. FICO score

The VantageScore and FICO Score are two methods of ranking a borrower’s creditworthiness. The scores are used, separately or together, to determine your credit and evaluate lending risk.

All credit scores analyze the same information from your credit report. The difference between a FICO score and a VantageScore comes from the way that the companies use the information, and how much weight they put on different factors, like payment history or the age of your accounts, for example.

Bottom line: Does credit score matter?

Your credit score is a major factor in lending decisions. If you plan to make large purchases that require credit, like financing a new car or obtaining a mortgage, your credit score will be important. A good credit score helps to ensure you’ll not only be approved for a loan but that you'll also get optimal terms and conditions, like lower interest rates. Your credit score shouldn’t be a mystery, and it won’t hurt your score to review your credit report. You are entitled to one free credit report each year with AnnualCreditReport.com.

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Profile picture of Jessica Render
by Jessica Render ConsumerAffairs Research Team

As a member of the ConsumerAffairs research team, Jessica Render is dedicated to providing well-researched, valuable content designed to help consumers make informed purchase decisions they can feel confident making. She holds a degree in journalism from Oral Roberts University.