Why's My FICO so low?

Mortgage and Lending with Cardinal Financial Company, Limited Partnership NMLS 365858

Wonder why you're FICO's so low?  Do you pay your bills on time and are never late but can't seem to figure out you're score doesn't reflect your payment history?  Because that's not the only factor in the mix.  When determining your scores, the 3 bureaus utilize a formula to calculate your score.  While payment history is the MAIN factor, it's not the only one.  Here's how it breaks down:

  1. Payment History accounts for 35% of your score.  Simple solution:  Pay your bills on time.
  2. Amounts Owed accounts for 30% of your score.  This is usually the culprit for most people and it mainly affects revolving accounts (credit cards).  It's imperative to keep your balances low, preferably at 30% of your credit limit.  50% is acceptable but when you cross that threshold, you're score begins to suffer.
  3. Length of Credit History accounts for 15% of your score.  The older the tradeline, the better.  Especially if it's history is flawless.
  4. Types of Credit accounts for 10% of your score.   Do you have a good mix of credit?
  5. New Credit accounts for 10% of your score.  Do you have too much debt?  Are you opening too many accounts to quickly?  Too many inquiries?  Even though this accounts for a small percentage of your score it's one of the biggest causes of scores to come down.

I hope this was informative for you as it is for my clients.  Feel free to share this with your clients and I hope by understanding how these factors affect your score, you're able to raise them up.

Comments (4)

Linda Lipscomb
Linda Lipscomb RE/MAX Lexington Henderson County TN - Lexington, TN
731-695-1118, Lexington TN Homes


Thanks.  Great information.  I am going to check mine.


Apr 04, 2008 11:28 AM
Linda Sanderson
Coldwell Banker Solano Pacific - Benicia, CA
James thank you for sharing this invaluable information.  I was just talking to a client about this earlier today.  You just answered one of the questions we both had.  I'll be sure to pass it on.
Apr 04, 2008 12:02 PM
James Jeter
Cardinal Financial Company, Limited Partnership - Carrollton, TX
James Jeter
Glad I could help.  Let me know if you have any other questions that I can help you and your clients with.
Apr 04, 2008 12:16 PM
Matthew Zgonc
Aksland Real Estate - Modesto, CA
Realtor, CFS, CVS
Thank you for the information on this. I have always wondered how they calculated this.
Apr 07, 2008 01:05 PM