Q & A – Why is there such a disparity in my credit scores?

Question

So my situation: I am in credit recovery.

A few years ago I went through a tough time and missed some payments. Everything has been current for almost 2 years. Recently I found my dream home, at the wrong time. I had my credit looked into, and the mid-score that was coming up from lenders was 601 (Experian). I decided to take a month, pay some debt down. I paid about $650 of my debt down, and got to about $2800 in debt with a credit line total of about $5950.

I had my score rechecked on Monday…mid-score 611 (Experian). The loan officer also told me my Equifax was like 603, Transunion was like 628.

After running all the scenarios, I decided to finally just stay in my current home for now. I had another LO run a check on my credit for a home equity line to do some work around this house. The score he came up with? 589. And denied the loan. He said it is a “blended score”.

I don’t understand how none of my scores were in the 500s one day, and the next day that’s what he comes up with.

Why is there such a disparity? I am now a little gun-shy about how long to wait to have him check it again once I pay more debts down. How frequently are points taken off for inquiries? Is it 10 points per cycle no matter how many pulls? I am discouraged. Thanks.

Answer

I am so sorry for what has happened to you.

To answer a question directly, you ask, “Is it 10 points per cycle, no matter how many pulls? No.

Typically if you have a hard pull (inquiry), which is an inquiry when you are applying for credit, it is a three to five point deduction from your credit score. However, if you pull a credit report yourself, it is considered a soft pull, or inquiry, and as such, does not affect your score.  The FICO scoring algorithm is not programmed to hurt your score simply by you checking on your  credit status.

Credit monitoring programs will show you 3 scores.  If they are FICO scores, they are generic scores, not the weighted scores needed by a mortgage loan officer. So, what you will view on monitoring programs will give you an indication, but not what you  need.   The reason I say that is because there are over 50 different FICO scores, each used for a particular market segment, such as buying a home, buying a car, applying for a credit card, insurance industry, etc. Personally, I use www.creditchecktotal.com.  (this credit monitoring system is not endorsed by the CreditGeni.us)   There are others also.

However, the question most pertinent is why did my score drop? A lot of times it could be debt ratios, debt collection items that came on that you had no knowledge of (especially in the medical area) or a combination of both. It could also have to do with closing a credit card (especially if you closed one of the older ones – a credit card with the longest credit history).

By the way, most loan officers for home loans do not use a blended rate, but will use the middle score.

I hope this helps.

2018-03-25T20:58:01+00:00 By |Educational, Q&A|

About the Author:

CERTIFIED FICO PROFESSIONAL - Currently the Executive Director and Founder of CreditGeni.us – A national Credit Education and Restoration Association with offices throughout the United States. MCS was founded in 2007 in response to the need for effective Credit Repair and Education.