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Credit Score Variance


King Nupe
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My scores seem to be all over the place. How do I know which is accurate?

Chase is (Trans) 797

Discover (Trans) 827

Wells Fargo (Experian) 820

Capital One 796

Experian 817

 

When I applied for a mortgage with Quicken, they had me at 715. That makes no sense!

 

 

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Each of the three CRAs that have data used for FICO scores differ in how the data are structured and this means even if everything is the same on each CRA there may be score variances.

 

There are dozens of types of FICO scores, you want to make sure you're comparing apples to apples, e.g., FICO 08 to FICO 08.

 

If you want to see the most comprehensive real scores buy your three scores from myfico.com which will include your mortgage scores.

 

Also, any "score" that doesn't say FICO should be ignored.

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The FICO scores you’re getting from your lender will also vary depending on FICO model, when they provide that score and individual reporting dates. 

You may have different dates but for some data points: 

My Chase, Disco, PenFed, AMEX and one USBank card all have a statement close date between the 11th and 13th of the month. BOA closes around the 25th, another USBank closes on the 3rd.


USBank reports on the first of the month. Everyone else reports right after statement date AFAIK. Exceptions for those that midcycle report 0 balance.

 

FICO 8 EQ from Langley FCU usually runs about 3-4 points less than EX or TU. They pull FICO on the 3rd or 4th.

 

FICO 8 TU from Disco pulls on the 11th. Usually within 2 points of EX

 

FICO 8 EX from AMEX pulls on 13th. Usually within 2 points of TU
 

FICO 9 EQ from PenFed pulls on 12th. Usually within 2-3 points of TU & EX

 

Just started using BOA TU FICO so no real data point there. That one will pull on the 20th but isn’t really going to be useful for me as far as tracking. I don’t bother with the Vantagescore from Chase. 

My FICOs have stayed within 5 points every pull for a little over a year. 


YMMV

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3 hours ago, King Nupe said:

My scores seem to be all over the place. How do I know which is accurate?

Chase is (Trans) 797

Discover (Trans) 827

Wells Fargo (Experian) 820

Capital One 796

Experian 817

 

When I applied for a mortgage with Quicken, they had me at 715. That makes no sense!

 

 

Most or all of the FICO scores cited are likely FICO 8 scores. 

 

Mortgage lenders are required to use earlier FICO scores for mortgages that are issued by government agencies or guaranteed by the quasi-governmental agencies.  In practice, all mortgages are evaluated by those scores.  The score models (varies by CRA) are Equifax Beacon 5.0. Experian/Fair Isaac Risk Model v2. TransUnion FICO Risk Score 04.

 

I bought a home in December.  While my FICO 8's run 790-810, my middle mortgage score was 725.  My grasp of the difference is that I carry about $30k of revolving debt which under the earlier FICO models was evaluated as a significant risk factor, whereas the newer models take additional factors into consideration and see the revolving debt as a low risk factor. 

 

Other factors may be at play in the significant score difference you observe.  Bottom line, that explanation and $2 will get you a cup of coffee.  (But, yeah, when you first encounter a situation like this, it's good for a small freak out.  "FICO Education", as it exists today, sucks.

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I make pot roast in a 225-degree oven.

 

For banana bread, I set the oven to 350.

 

Both are accurate oven temperatures for cooking food, I just pick the one that's applicable to what I'm making at the time.

 

 

 

Edited by cv91915
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7 hours ago, cv91915 said:

I make pot roast in a 225-degree oven.

 

For banana bread, I set the oven to 350.

 

Both are accurate oven temperatures for cooking food, I just pick the one that's applicable to what I'm making at the time.

AND...I would bet that there are times while fixing that pot roast that the oven may drop to 223 and could increase to 227 along the way...

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14 hours ago, centex said:

AND...I would bet that there are times while fixing that pot roast that the oven may drop to 223 and could increase to 227 along the way...

There is more variance in oven temperatures in any one oven then there is in any one FICO score model.

 

Ovens preheated to 225 will heat to ~250 and then cool down to ~200 before heating up again.

 

The only variance you will get in a given FICO score model is when you look at your score and then a lender pulls it... which could cause a 0 to ~7 point swing.

 

:)

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A major difference between older FICO scores used for mortgages and the more recent ones is that the older ones are extremely sensitive to having balances on all or most your credit cards even if your utilization is very low.  Critical to get at least half your card balances reporting at $0.

 

I saw drops of over 60 points from that and a large increase back when a new card account reported with a 0 balance. Even though none of my cards had large balances and utilization was only about 10%.

 

FICOs 8 and above don't exhibit that extreme behavior.

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3 hours ago, mec said:

There is more variance in oven temperatures in any one oven then there is in any one FICO score model.

 

Ovens preheated to 225 will heat to ~250 and then cool down to ~200 before heating up again.

 

The only variance you will get in a given FICO score model is when you look at your score and then a lender pulls it... which could cause a 0 to ~7 point swing.

 

:)

Not entirely accurate...for EVERY score model, ANY update that occurs COULD result in movement of a score.  They are NOWHERE near as static as some mistakenly believe them to be...

 

Further, a change in data that moves one model UP could move a different model DOWN.  People need to learn to quit sweating the small stuff and instead learn WHY there is not ONE score and WHY it matters to learn what model they are looking at and whether it is really relevant to their future lending needs... 

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2 hours ago, cashnocredit said:

A major difference between older FICO scores used for mortgages and the more recent ones is that the older ones are extremely sensitive to having balances on all or most your credit cards even if your utilization is very low.  Critical to get at least half your card balances reporting at $0.

 

I saw drops of over 60 points from that and a large increase back when a new card account reported with a 0 balance. Even though none of my cards had large balances and utilization was only about 10%.

 

FICOs 8 and above don't exhibit that extreme behavior.

Something that a lot of people overlook on utilization is that it is NOT just the overall ratio (total balances vs total lines) but ALSO will incorporate the ratio of total cards to cards with a balance.  One could have low balances on 12 different cards but their score will potentially be lower than the person who has the same outstanding debt load but with the balance only on ONE card. 

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