Check Your FICO® Score For Free
Understanding your FICO® Score is a great way to gauge your financial health. You can check your score for free in Online & Mobile Banking.
How to check your score
In Online Banking, you'll see the FICO® Score feature under the Financial Planning menu. The first time you open the link, you'll need to enroll.
You'll also see the FICO® Score as its own item in the Mobile Banking menu, although you may need to enroll through Online Banking first.
What is a FICO® Score?
Thirty years ago, the Fair Isaac Corporation (FICO®) wanted to provide a method for scoring creditworthiness that was fair to both lenders and consumers.
That method is the FICO® Score, and has since become the industry-standard for making fair and accurate decisions, used by over 90% of lenders.
A FICO® Score is a three-digit number that’s essentially a summary of your credit report. It measures your payment history, length of credit history, amounts owed, makeup of your credit, and how much credit you have.
A good FICO® Score is important, because it could lead to lower rates on your loans and credit cards.
Because the scores are based on your credit information, you can always help your score by making payments on time, lowering your debt, and limiting the number of credit cards you have.
How is a FICO® Score calculated?
FICO® Scores are calculated by splitting the data in your credit report into five categories:
- Payment history (35%)
- Amounts owed (30%)
- Length of credit history (15%)
- New credit (10%)
- Credit mix (10%)
Because every person's situation is unique, these percentages might change based on certain factors.
For example, if you don't have a long credit history, your score will be calculated differently than someone who does.
Payment history is the most important factor in your score.
A lender wants to know if you've been making payments on time.
This helps the lender figure out the amount of risk involved in extending credit.
If you have credit accounts that you owe on, it doesn't necessarily mean you're a high-risk borrower, or that you'll have a low score.
However, if you are using a high percentage of your available credit, it could indicate that you're overextended.
Banks could interpret this to mean you're a high-risk borrower, with a greater chance of defaulting.
Length of Credit History
Generally speaking, a longer credit history will increase your score.
People who are just starting could still have a high FICO® Score, depending on the other four categories.
Your score will also depend on your mix of credit cards, retail accounts, installment loans, finance company accounts, and mortgage loans.
It's not necessary to have one of each, and this is only 10% of your score.
Opening several credit accounts in a short amount of time could represent a greater risk, especially if you don't have a long credit history.
Only open credit accounts that you actually need, and try not to open too many accounts too fast.
Since understanding your FICO® Score is an important aspect of your overall financial health, we believe you should have easy, instant, free access.
At SF Fire Credit Union, our members, and their financial needs, come first.
As a local credit union, we want to get to know you and help you achieve your goals. Come into a branch or call us today. Our people are happy to serve you.