You probably know that your credit score matters. It’s a number that reflects your trustworthiness as a borrower. A lender will look at your credit score if you ask to borrow money from them, a landlord will look at it if you’re trying to move into a new apartment, and a credit card company will look at it before deciding whether to issue you a card.
It’s important to remember that there is not one definitive source for your credit score. There are various ways of determining that score, and it could look dramatically different depending on which method a credit reporting bureau uses. It’s important to know the difference between your FICO score vs. credit score vs. scores from other agencies, such as Vantage.
Here, we’ll talk about the similarities and differences between FICO and Vantage credit scores.
The Differences Between FICO and Vantage
Your FICO and Vantage credit scores will rarely be identical. There are notable differences between these two credit score agencies.
1. Scoring Criteria
Not every person is eligible to receive a credit score. Your score has to satisfy the minimum criteria a model establishes.
In order to even have a FICO score, you need to have a tradeline, such as a line of credit, loan, or credit card that is at least six months old and shows activity within the last six months. For a Vantage score, you also need one tradeline, but there’s no requirement for how long you’ve had that account.
2. Competing Companies
They’re also different in the sense that they are competing companies. The business model of each one dictates that they create and sell credit scores to lenders and other businesses.
FICO has been around since 1956, which is why more people know about it than Vantage. Vantage is a relative newcomer that hit the market in 2006.
FICO and Vantage scores are also similar in some ways. Let’s look at how these financial snapshots are likely to match up with one another.
1. Credit Score Range
Most people know that the FICO score range goes from 300 to 850. The higher the score, the better it is for you, since it means you’re considered a less risky lending prospect. Vantage used to have a different score range, from 501 to 990. However, the latest versions have gone with the same range that FICO uses.
2. Score Factors
The factors that each company uses to calculate your credit score are also similar. The mixture of your account types matters, as does each account’s age. Both scoring systems also look at your payment history and credit utilization ratio.
Your score moves up or down depending on the financial moves you make. Factors outside your credit report do not impact your score. This is true with both the FICO and Vantage models.
3. Design Objective
Both scoring systems are also designed to do approximately the same thing. Their objective is to assess how much of a risk you are. They each try to predict how likely you are to pay back your credit obligations. Each model is based on the idea that your past actions can predict your future ones.
Each Scoring Model is Useful
These two models compete with one another, and their scoring criteria differ. However, they have gone to using the same range, the score factors are virtually identical, and they have the same design objectives.
You don’t have to concern yourself with exactly how these companies tabulate their scores, though. As long as you do things like pay your rent on time and stay on top of your credit card bills, you should maintain both a robust FICO and Vantage score.
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