An Equifax score sounds like some cool rating, doesn’t it? It is, for sure, if you’re on top of your finances and are checking your credit score routinely to monitor changes. We all have a credit score, but where does that score come from?
Credit reporting agencies compile data to determine this score. And, there are three credit reporting agencies you’ll need to know about: TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian. Each agency uses its own factors and methods to determine your score and while they’re all pretty similar, your score from each usually varies just a little bit.
What is an Equifax credit score and how do they determine your actual credit score? Check out our complete guide to Equifax credit reports and why it’s important to access yours frequently.
What is the Equifax Credit Score Range?
At Float, we use your Equifax credit report to determine your credit score via the app. While our scale varies a bit in terms of what needs improving and what’s considered to be a great credit score, it’s all giving you the same information: how creditworthy are you?
The Equifax credit score uses a numerical range of 280 to 850 to indicate your credit risk; a higher credit score indicates lower credit risk and, of course, a lower credit score indicates a higher risk.
Each credit reporting agency and even others such as FICO and VantageScore have their own ranges to determine what’s considered to be a good credit score and what’s poor or great. Equifax, for example, sets their credit score range as follows:
- POOR: 300-579
- FAIR: 580-669
- GOOD: 670-739
- VERY GOOD: 740-799
- EXCELLENT: 800-850
Again, each credit reporting agency is different and the ranges vary a bit from one to another. As mentioned, we have our own unique scale we use, which you can choose to let others see as a numerical value or simply as an emoji:
- NEEDS IMPROVING: 300-499
- NEEDS LOVE: 500-600
- GOOD: 601-660
- GREAT: 661-780
- OUTSTANDING: 781-850
What Factors Affect an Equifax Credit Score?
Credit reporting agencies are pulling numbers from various different areas of your financial life. This means that they’ll take into account any missed student loan payments, your overall debt owed (mortgage debt, student debt, credit card debt, etc.), as well as other factors such as credit utilization rate and debt to income ratio.
Mostly, they’re using the following factors to determine your credit score:
- Payment history
- Used credit vs. available credit
- Types of credit used
- New credit
- Length of credit history
- Hard inquiries
Payment history and amount owed tend to hold the most weight, which is why it’s so important to never miss a payment and to keep your debt low. Why is payment history so important in determining your Equifax credit score? They want to show lenders that any information regarding late or missed payments, bankruptcies, and debts that are currently in collection.
It’s important to note that not all creditors report to all three agencies. This means that if you’ve opened a new student credit card or prepaid debit card, for example, they might not report that usage to the credit bureaus. This can also affect your credit score.
What Else is on an Equifax Credit Report?
Some people seem to think that the only thing that appears on credit reports is your payment history on loans and any details regarding credit card usage. Credit reports actually provide you and potential lenders with a much more comprehensive overview of your financial history and health.
Expect to see other things, such as:
- Wage attachments
- Tax liens
- Hard and soft inquiries
- Original and current balance of accounts
- Current status of all accounts
- Civil judgments
- Credit limits
- Employment information
Chances are, you don’t even know what some of those values are. That’s why it’s so important to constantly check in on your credit health and monitor your credit score as it changes.
However, it’s important to note that credit reports are compiled whenever you request them. So, if you’ve recently made payments, cleared a debt, or fixed a mistake on your report, it might take up to 30 days for your full credit report to reflect that as it requires that lenders update the accounts.
How to Get Your Free Credit Score
Bet you didn’t know just how much information you can access by requesting your full credit report, right? If you did then perhaps you’re looking for a way to check your credit score for free.
Float is the only place where you can not only access an updated credit score for free but also choose to share your information with others, such as friends, family members, and even your spouse. Choose to share your full credit report, your credit score, or simply a fun emoji that indicates your credit range.
It’s a fun, easy way to unlock your financial potential while participating in the financial wins of your loved ones. Now that you know what an Equifax credit score is, want us to pull yours for free? Sign up today.