You probably understand that a higher credit score is a good thing. From lower interest rates to being able to qualify for mortgage, your credit score has the ability to open doors. But do you know what lenders consider a “good” score?
To help you take financial responsibility, we’ll dive into what it means to have a 700 credit score. We’ll see what scores lenders look for and why it’s important to have a good score. Finally, we’ll give you credit tips and tricks that you can use to push your score to the next level.
My credit score is 700, do I have good credit?
You’ll be happy to know that every credit reporting bureau puts a 700 credit score in the “good” range. The average credit score is currently 703. About 6 in 10 Americans have a credit score of 700 or better, according to Experian, meaning that 700 is average. It is a passable baseline to get better interest rates and lending opportunities.
A good credit score of 700 or more is beneficial because it gives you access to more loan options and lower interest rates. Research by Experian shows that only 8% of people who have good credit scores miss multiple loan payments in the future. This means that you’re a less risky borrower and more lenders will want to work with you.
Improving your score by just 10 points can be seriously beneficial, especially if it pushes your score from “fair” to “good.” It’s even more beneficial if you can push your score from “good” to “excellent”! Check out Credit Builder Plus from MoneyLion, an easy-to-follow program for boosting your credit score quickly.
What is the good credit score range?
Your score can vary by bureau because each bureau uses its own calculation method. There may be a difference in the kind of financial data that they each extract from creditors as well.
Speaking of major credit reporting bureaus, there are three of them: Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. Each bureau issues you a score based on its own data and calculation methods.
The most common calculation methods are the VantageScore model and the FICO model. These two calculation models vary slightly, but both put major importance on your repayment history and how much credit you use. Let’s take a closer look at what a 700 score means at all three bureaus.
Equifax uses a modified version of the VantageScore scoring model. Equifax’s score ranges are as follows:
- Poor: Below 559 points
- Fair: 560 to 659 points
- Good: 660 to 724 points
- Very good: 725 to 759 points
- Excellent: 760 to 850 points
The highest Equifax score that you can have is 850. Equifax considers a 700 credit score to be in the “good” range.
TransUnion uses the VantageScore scoring model. TransUnion is the only credit scoring bureau that gives you a grade for your credit score instead of a ranking. Just like when you were in school, F is the worst grade and A is the best.
Here are TranUnion’s scoring ranges and grades:
- F: 300 to 600 points
- D: 601 to 657 points
- C: 658 to 719 points
- B: 720 to 780 points
- A: 781 to 850 points
TransUnion’s maximum score is 850 points. A 700 credit score will earn you a “C” grade, which is similar to a “good” rating with other bureaus.
Experian uses the FICO scoring model, which is also the model used by most lenders. Here are Experian’s scoring ranges:
- Very poor: 300 to 579 points
- Fair: 580 to 669 points
- Good: 670 to 739 points
- Very good: 740 to 799 points
- Exceptional: 800 to 850 points
Experian’s maximum score is 850 points. A 700 credit score means you have a score in the “good” range.
How to increase your credit score
Are you ready to take your credit score from good to exceptional? Use these credit tips and tricks to demonstrate your financial responsibility to creditors and you’ll be able to get closer to a top-tier credit score and establish good credit.
Your payment history makes up about 35% to 40% of your credit score. It’s the single most important factor in determining your credit score. Your score will go up if you always pay your credit card and other bills on time. A long history of missed payments on your account means your score will go down.
The best way to push your credit score from 700 to 800 is to develop a strong and solid history of on-time payments. This can be tricky because you have to balance multiple accounts and cards with different due dates. Consider signing up for auto-pay if your credit card provider offers it.
Auto-pay automatically deducts your minimum payment from a linked bank account on your payment due date. This means that you won’t have to worry about accidentally lowering your score by forgetting your payment due dates.
Credit utilization refers to how much of your available credit you use on a month-to-month basis. In other words, it is a very important factor when it comes to your score.
Lenders will look at your credit utilization as a ratio of used vs total credit. For example, if you have a credit card with a $10,000 limit and you put $3,000 on your card, you now have a 30% credit utilization ratio.
The lower your utilization ratio, the higher your credit score will be. As a general rule, lenders like to see you use less than 30% of your total available credit.
We recommend that you try to use less than 10% of your total available credit to see a maximum increase in your score. Otherwise, you may want to request an increase in credit from your current provider to naturally lower your utilization ratio as long as you don’t increase your spending.
Avoid closing accounts
Closing credit cards that you don’t use might seem like a natural next step. Unfortunately, this seemingly smart move can actually lower your credit score. When you close a line of credit that you already have open, it increases your utilization ratio, even if you spend the same amount of money.
For example, let’s say that you have two credit cards and each one has a $1,000 credit limit. Your total available credit is $2,000 between both cards. Let’s also say that you put $500 of monthly expenses on one of your cards but you don’t really use the second one. In this case, your credit utilization is 25%.
If you close the second card that you don’t use, your total available credit drops to $1,000. Even if you still spend that same $500 every month, your credit utilization is now 50%, which will set off some alarms with credit reporting bureaus.
Limit new inquiries
Lenders and creditors don’t like it when you apply for a lot of credit at once. This often implies that you’re about to take a big financial risk, which puts your ability to pay back your loans in jeopardy. A soft inquiry—which is when you authorize a creditor to look at your report—temporarily lowers your score.
This typically isn’t a big deal and only results in a minor hit to your credit score. However, if you plan to apply for a big loan soon, like for a student loan or a mortgage, you’ll want to limit your other inquiries. Don’t apply for other sources of credit unless you absolutely need to.
Monitor for reporting errors
Are you doing everything right, yet your score still isn’t rising? There might be an error on your credit report that’s lowering your score. About one in every five people has at least one error on a credit report.
The only way to find out if you have a mistake on your credit report is to view each one of your reports and read them yourself. Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, you’re entitled to one free view of each of your credit reports every 12 months. You can get a copy of your TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian reports online at the official annual credit reporting website.
Request and download a copy of all three of your reports. Keep an eye out for inaccurate information. Some of the most common errors that lower your score include:
- Your name misspelled or the wrong Social Security number listed
- Accounts you paid on time listed as late
- Accounts you closed voluntarily listed as “closed by lender”
- Information and loans listed for someone who has a name similar to yours
- Negative credit information not removed after it has expired
Report any mistakes that you find by going to the bureau’s website. You must contact each bureau individually if the mistake is on more than one report. The bureau will investigate your claim and fix the mistake.
Track your credit with MoneyLion
It can help to sign up with a credit monitoring system like MoneyLion’s Credit Tracker. MoneyLion’s credit tracking service keeps tabs on your credit, alerting you whenever a new item appears on one of your reports. This can help you keep your inquiries in check and spot identity theft fast.
Credit builder helps to monitor your credit and track your progress, along with 0% APR Instacash to cover everyday expenses. This means you’ll have cash when you need it so you don’t fall behind. You can even check your score without lowering it through the app for free.
Build a better score
Is a 700 credit score good? A credit score of 700 points is good—but even 740 takes you from “good” to “very good.” Only 20% of Americans have a credit score of 800+ which is in the “exceptional” category.
That doesn’t mean you can’t be one of them! Are you ready to push your score to new heights? If so, you’ll need to create a plan of action to make it happen.
Stay consistent with your payments, track your spending, and keep your utilization score low. Before you know it, you’ll be on the path to a great credit score.Need a little boost when it comes to improving your finances? MoneyLion can help get you on the path of great credit and financial freedom. Taking financial responsibility has never been easier!